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Full text of "Hatch Act reform amendments of 1993 : hearings before the Committee on Governmental Affairs, United States Senate, One Hundred Third Congress, first session on S. 185, to amend Title 5 to restore to federal civilian employees their right to participate voluntarily, as private citizens, in the political processes of the nation, to protect such employees from improper political solicitations, and for other purposes, April 27 and 30, 1993"

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\\i S. Hrg. 103-771 

^ HATCH ACT REFORM AMENDMENTS OF 1993 



Y 4. G 74/9: S. HRG. 103-771 

Hatch Act Reforn ftnendnents of 1993... -oj-iyr^Q 

BEFORE THE 

COMMITTEE ON 

GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS 
UNITED STATES SENATE 

ONE HUNDRED THIRD CONGRESS 

FIRST SESSION 
ON 

S. 185 

TO AMEND TITLE 5, UNITED STATES CODE, TO RESTORE TO FEDERAL 
CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES THEIR RIGHT TO PARTICIPATE VOLUNTARILY, 
AS PRIVATE CITIZENS, IN THE POLITICAL PROCESSES OF THE NA- 
TION, TO PROTECT SUCH EMPLOYEES FROM IMPROPER POLITICAL 
SOLICITATIONS, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES 



APRIL 27 AND 30, 1993 



Printed for the use of the Committee on Governmental Affairs 




m 



U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 
67^00 cc WASHINGTON : 1994 



For sale by the U.S. Government Printing Office 
Superintendent of Documents, Congressional Sales Office, Washington, DC 20402 
ISBN 0-16-046017-4 



y 



S. Hrg. 103-771 

HATCH Aa REFORM AMENDMENTS OF 1993 



G 74/9: S. HRG, 103-771 

Act Reforn Anendnents of 19?3... _^^^^,^^ 

JIINGS 

BEFORE THE 

COMMITTEE ON 
GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS 
UNITED STATES SENATE 

ONE HUNDRED THIRD CONGRESS 

FIRST SESSION 

ON 

S. 185 

TO AMEND TITLE 5, UNITED STATES CODE, TO RESTORE TO FEDERAL 
CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES THEIR RIGHT TO PARTICIPATE VOLUNTARILY, 
AS PRIVATE CITIZENS, IN THE POLITICAL PROCESSES OF THE NA- 
TION, TO PROTECT SUCH EMPLOYEES FROM IMPROPER POLITICAL 
SOLICITATIONS, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES 



APRIL 27 AND 30, 1993 



Printed for the use of the Committee on Governmental Affairs 



/ '.. 




"•'•'TkAITi^,. 



U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 
67-400 cc WASHINGTON : 1994 



For sale by the U.S. Government Printing Office 
Superintendent of Documents. Congressional Sales Office. Washington, DC 20402 
ISBN 0-16-046017-4 



COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS 

JOHN GLENN, Ohio, Chairman 
SAM NUNN, Georgia WILLIAM V. ROTH, JR., Delaware 

CARL LEVIN, Michigan TED STEVENS, Alaska 

JIM SASSER, Tennessee WILLLAM S. COHEN, Maine 

DAVID PRYOR, Arkansas THAD COCHRAN, Mississippi 

JOSEPH I. LIEBERMAN, Connecticut JOHN McCAIN, Arizona 

DANIEL K. AKAKA, Hawah 
BYRON L. DORGAN, North Dakota 

Leonard Weiss, Staff Director 

Jane J. McFarland, Professional Staff 

Catherine E. Lewis, Staff Assistant 

Franklin G. Polk, Minority Staff Director and Chief Counsel 

Michal Sue Prosser, Chief Clerk 



(II) 



CONTENTS 



opening statements: Page 

Senator Glenn 1, 25 

Senator Roth 9, 26 

Prepared statement: 

Senator Akaka 4 

Senator Lieberman 80 

WITNESSES 

Tuesday, April 27, 1993 

James B. King, Director, Office of Personnel Management 5 

Friday, April 30, 1993 

David Rosenbloom, National Academy of Public Administration, accompanied 
by Roger Sperry, Director of Management Studies, and Murray Comarow, 
Fellow 28 

Bernard Rosen, Distinguished Adjunct Professor in Residence, American Uni- 
versity 40 

David Burckman, Secretary, Association of Former Internal Revenue Execu- 
tives 42 

Marvin H. Morse, Delegate to the ABA, Federal Bar Association 44 

David Denholm, President, Public Service Research Council 59 

Alphabetical List of Witnesses 

Burckman, David: 

Testimony 42 

Denholm, David: 

Testimony 59 

Prepared statement with attachments , 105 

King, James B.: 

Testimony 5 

Prepared statement 6 

Morse, Marvin H.: 

Testimony 44 

Rosen, Bernard: 

Testimony 40 

Prepared statement 102 

Rosenbloom, David: 

Testimony 28 

Prepared statement 100 

APPENDDC 

S. 185 67 

Prepared statement with attachment of Congresswoman Nancy L. Johnson .... 80 
Statements submitted for the record: 

Alfred K. Whitehead 82 

National Association of Government Employees , AFL-CIO 83 

American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL- 
CIO 85 

John N. Sturdivant 86 

Robert M. Tobias, National President, National Treasury Employees 

Union 90 

(III) 



IV 

Page 

Statements submitted for the record — Continued 

Antonio J. Califa 92 

Reed Larson, President of the Right to Work Committee 9b 

International Personnel Management Association 97 

Letter dated November 28, 1989 to Senator Glenn from G. Jerry Shaw, 

General Counsel, Senior Executives Association 99 

Letter dated April 28, 1993 to Senator Glenn from G. Jerry Shaw, General 
Counsel, Senior Executives Association •• 100 

Letter to Robert M. Tobias, National Treasury Employees Union from David 
G. Blattner, IRS •••••"••• ••••i;- ^^^ 

Letter dated April 28, 1993 to Senator Glenn from John M. Palguta, U.S. 
Merit Systems Protection Board ;• H ' 

Letter dated March 8, 1993 to Senator Glenn from Fred Wertheimer, Presi- 
dent, Common Cause ••••••• 117 

Public Service Research Council— Special Report: The Hatch Act and the 
Merit System 11^ 



S. 185— HATCH ACT REFORM AMENDMENTS 

OF 1993 



TUESDAY, APRIL 27, 1993 

U.S. Senate, 
Committee on Governmental Affairs, 

Washington, DC. 

The Committee met, pursuant to notice, at 9:39 a.m., in room 
SD-342, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Hon. John Glenn, Chair- 
man of the Committee, presiding. 

Present: Senators Glenn and Roth. 

OPENING STATEMENT OF CHAIRMAN GLENN 

Chairman Glenn. Good morning, and welcome to today's hearing 
on S. 185, the Hatch Act Reform Amendments of 1993, and I would 
stress reform amendments. This is not doing away with the whole 
Hatch Act, as has been gdluded to by some of the reports. 

Let me just say before I go on with my statement that I come 
as a convert to Hatch Act reform. I have said at some of our pre- 
vious hearings on this that when I first came to the Senate I didn't 
think we needed any Hatch Act reform and was against it. Then 
I got into it and really looked at it as part of the Committee re- 
sponsibilities, and the more I looked into it the more ridiculous the 
Hatch Act became in its present form and its present way of being 
carried out. So that is when we then began looking at ways to re- 
form the Hatch Act, and now I am definitely committed to Hatch 
Act reform. 

Ever since I assumed the chairmanship of the Governmental Af- 
fairs Committee, the Committee has held hearings on problems 
with the current Hatch Law and reported corrective legislation. I 
never understood why our very modest efforts, and they are modest 
efforts, always seem to produce Presidential veto threats and even 
a veto we couldn't override. 

Year after year. Congress after Congress, consideration of the 
Hatch Act always evokes ridiculous extremes of opinions, but I 
think the future is brightening with regard to Hatch Act reform, 
and I underline reform again, not Hatch Act repeal. This session 
of Congress holds the strong promise that this legislation will not 
be vetoed, and we will work with the administration on enacting 
meaningful reforms into law. 

At a time when so many people speak of reinventing Govern- 
ment, I am tempted to rename this legislation the Hatch Act 
Reinvention Amendments of 1993 because essentially what this bill 
would do is eliminate rulings that are confusing, non-sensical, and 

(1) 



trivial, and replace them with very clear-cut, workable and under- 
standable rules. S. 185 would reform a 54-year-old law and bring 
it into this century, bring it up to the 1990's. 

Under current law, if you are a Hatched Federal employee, for 
instance, you, like every other American — even though you are 
Hatched, you can write a $1,000 check to the partisan candidate 
of your choice for Federal office. However, let us suppose that your 
family budget doesn't permit this and you will want to make some 
kind of contribution. You may want to go down and you may want 
to stuff envelopes or volunteer to participate in a voter registration 
drive. This would make a lot of sense. You are giving in-kind con- 
tribution. But no. You would be breaking the law. The handcuffs 
of the Hatch Act permit you to give a $1,000 contribution, but don't 
permit you to lick an envelope on behalf of a candidate. I think 
that is ludicrous, as well as just being flat unfair. 

Under current law, if you are a Hatched Federal employee, you 
can wear a partisan campaign button to work. You can put a politi- 
cal poster on your front lawn or on your car, but you can't wave 
that same poster at a rally. Where is the logic in that? Those are 
just a couple of examples. 

Hearings that the Governmental Affairs Committee held in 1988 
on the Hatch Act bore evidence that Federal and Postal Service 
employees are discouraged from engaging in even unprohibited ac- 
tivity because they are afraid of stepping over the blurry and crook- 
ed line that separates permissible activity from activity which is il- 
legal. 

S. 185 attempts to draw a bright line, a straight line, against all 
political activities on the job and for participation off the job with 
four basic rules to be followed. First, Federal employees would still 
be prohibited from running for partisan elective office. Second, they 
would still be prohibited, whether on or off the job, from soliciting 
campaign contributions from the general public. 

Third, Federal workers would still be prohibited from coercion for 
political purposes. Fourth, Hatched employees would be prohibited 
from engaging in any political activity while wearing a uniform or 
insignia that identifies them as a Federal or postal employee. 

Now, we also put tougher penalties in. As I recall, the amend- 
ment was one which we accepted on the floor, I think — I don't 
think it even had to have a vote, if I recall correctly. I believe it 
was Senator Dole who put it in. It put in the possibility of a $5,000 
fine and, if I recall correctly, 3 years in jail for violations. So we 
put very tough penalties into this bill for £uiy violations. 

I will go back a little. In 1939, Federal jobs were being awarded 
on the basis of political contributions. There wasn't Euiy doubt 
about that. It was a bad situation, and this ic why the Hatch Act 
was passed. However, it is importgmt to distinguish civil service 
hiring procedures and merit principles from the edicts of the Hatch 
Act. There is nothing in this Hatch Act reform bill that would 
change Federal civil service laws requiring that employees be hired 
and promoted based upon their qualifications. Unlike in 1939 when 
the Hatch Act was enacted, the classified merit system — the classi- 
fied merit system — covers the majority of Federal jobs, removing 
the major source of political coercion, the awarding of jobs and pro- 
motions. 



Under S. 185, Federal employees would be allowed to work volun- 
tarily as private citizens for candidates and causes of their choice. 
They would be allowed to participate in rallies and conventions. 
They would be allowed to circulate a nominating petition. They 
would be allowed to work on a voter registration drive. These are 
just basic Constitutional rights that other Americans take for 
granted, and I believe it is high time for change. 

We always hear that the Federal Government should be like 
other employers and not exempt itself from Federal laws. In this 
case, it should treat its own workforce a little bit more like ordi- 
nary citizens, for no private employer would seek to curtail such 
basic Constitutional rights. It is time we ended this game of trivial 
confusion and brought far greater fairness to the political process 
for civil servants. 

Prepared Statement of Senator Glenn 

Good morning and welcome to today's hearing on S. 185, the "Hatch Act Reform 
Amendments of 1993." 

Hatch Act reform is a subject very near and dear to my heart. Ever since I as- 
sumed Chairmanship of the Governmental Affairs Committee, this Committee has 
held hearings on problems with the current Hatch Act law and reported corrective 
legislation. I never understood why our modest efforts always seem to produce presi- 
dential veto threats and even a veto. But year after year, Congress after Congress, 
consideration of the Hatch Act always evokes ridiculous extremes of opinions. 

But the future is brightening. This session of Congress holds the strong promise 
that this legislation will not be vetoed and we will work with the Administration 
on enacting meaningful reforms into law. 

At a time when so many people speak of reinventing government, I am tempted 
to rename this legislation the Hatch Act Reinvention Amendments of 1993. Because 
essentially what this bill would do is eliminate rulings that are confusing, nonsen- 
sical and trivial, and replace them with clear-cut workable and understandable 
rules. S. 185 would reform a 54 year old law and bring it into this century. 

Under current law, if you are a "Hatched" Federal employee, you — like every 
other American — may write a $1,000 check to the partisan candidate of your choice. 
However, let's say that your family budget doesn't permit this and you want to 
make some kind of contribution: you might want to stuff envelopes or volunteer to 
participate in a voter registration drive. This would make sense. But, no! You'd be 
breaking the law! The hand-cuffs of the Hatch Act permit you to give $1,000 but 
don't permit you to hck an envelope on behalf of a candidate. This, I submit, is ludi- 
crous as well as being unfair. 

Under current law, if you are a "Hatched" Federal employee, you can wear a par- 
tisan campaign button to work. You can put a political poster on your front lawn 
or on your car. But, you cannot wave a political poster at a rally. Where's the logic 
in this? 

Hearings that the Governmental Affairs Committee held in 1988 on the Hatch Act 
bore evidence that Federal and postal service employees are discouraged from en- 
gaging in even unprohibited activity because they are afraid of stepping over the 
blurry and crooked line that separates permissible activity from activity which is 
illegal. 

S. 185 attempts to draw a bright line: against all political activities on the job and 
for participation off the job with four basic rules to follow. First, Federal employees 
would still be prohibited from running for partisan elective office. Second, they 
would still be prohibited — whether on or off-the-job— from soliciting campaign con- 
tributions from the general public. Third, Federal workers would still be prohibited 
from coercion for political purposes. Fourth, Hatched employees would be prohibited 
from engaging in any political activity while wearing a uniform or insignia that 
identifies them as a Federal or postal employee. 

In 1939, Federal jobs were being awarded on the basis of political contributions. 
This is why the Hatch Act was passed. However, it is important to distinguish civil 
service hiring procedures and merit principles from the edicts of the Hatch Act. 
There is nothing in this Hatch Act Reform bill that would change Federal civil serv- 
ice laws requiring that employees be hired and promoted based upon their qualifica- 
tions. Unlike in 1939, when the Hatch Act was enacted, the classified merit system 



covers the majority of Federal jobs, removing the major source of political coercion: 
the awarding of jobs and promotions. 

Under S. 185, Federal employees would be allowed to work voluntarily, as private 
citizens, for candidates and causes of their choice. They would be allowed to partici- 
pate in rallies and conventions, circulate a nominating petition, and work on a voter 
registration drive. These are basic Constitutional rights that other Americans take 
for granted, and it is high time for change. 

People are always saying that the Federal Government should be like other em- 
ployers and not exempt itself from Federal laws. In this case, it should treat its own 
work force a little bit more like ordinary citizens — for no private employer would 
seek to curtail such basic Constitutional rights. It's time we ended this game of triv- 
ial confusion and brought far greater fairness to the political process for civil serv- 
ants. 

Please let me say that I look forward to working with the Clinton Administration 
on this legislation. I am pleased that Mr. James B. King, Director of the Office of 
Personnel Management, will be testifying on behalf of the Administration today. 

Chairman Glenn. We do have a statement from Senator Akaka 
which will insert into the record at this point. 

Prepared Statement of Senator Akaka 

Mr. Chairman, I am pleased that the Committee is moving forward on a bill 
which holds tremendous importance for our nation's Federal employees. Reform of 
the Hatch Act is long overdue for the millions of Federal employees who have been 
denied the same basic rights afforded to those employed in the private sector. 

As the budget debate has shown, Federal employees are often asked to shoulder 
the financial burdens of the Federal Government. The Administration has asked 
Federal employees to carry a large share of the responsibility in lowering the Fed- 
eral deficit and spending by reducing Federal pay and benefits. Federal employees 
should not have to bear the additional burden of being denied the same constitu- 
tional rights to participate in the political process as well. 

While the roots of democracy are struggling to take hold in the former Soviet 
Union, we have denied these same liberties to Federal employees in our own coun- 
try. It saddens me to see that a law implemented to protect and assist Federal em- 
ployees has, instead, been used to restrict and deprive them. I know firsthand how 
the Hatch Act has been used to prohibit Federal employees from participating, on 
their own time, in the political process. Throughout most of my tenure in Congress, 
my wife, Millie, was a Federal employee. Until her retirement several years ago, 
Millie was unable to represent me at political functions because she was a Federal 
worker. 

Federal employees are Americans and deserve the same opportunities afforded to 
those who work outside the government. The Hatch Act amendments under consid- 
eration today will redress the inequalities facing Federal employees. They will pro- 
vide the same political rights assured other Americans, while ensuring that individ- 
uals who work for the Federal Government do not take advantage of their positions. 
The bill seeks to allow Federal employees to participate in certain political processes 
which were previously banned, while protecting Federal employees from improper 
political solicitation. It also places more stringent restrictions on political coercion 
and provides greater penalties for violations. 

During his recent confirmation hearing. Office of Personnel Management Director, 
James King, indicated his support for changes to the Hatch Act. He indicated at 
that time that stronger language may be needed in certain areas to uphold the in- 
tegrity of the career service. I look forward to hearing Mr. King's thoughts on this 
matter. 

Mr. Chairman, I wish to commend you for your leadership in this area, and look 
forward to working with you, members of the Committee and the Administration 
to ensure the political rights of our nation's Federal employees. 

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Glenn. Let me say I look forward to working with the 
Clinton administration on this legislation. I am very pleased that 
Mr. James King, Director of the Office of Personnel Management, 
0PM, will be testifying on behalf of the administration today. 

Mr. King, we welcome you to our hearing this morning. We look 
forward to your statement and then we will have some questions. 



TESTIMONY OF JAMES B. KING, DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF 
PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT 

Mr. King. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I have a very brief state- 
ment, Mr. Chairman. First, I am pleased to appear before you 
today to present the views of the Office of Personnel Management 
on S. 185, the Hatch Act Reform Amendments of 1993. 

Chairman Glenn. Jim, pull the mike right up in front — they are 
very directional mikes there — so people in the back can hear. 

Mr. King. Thank you. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you. 

Mr. King. Is that significantly better? 

Chairman Glenn. That is better. Thank you. 

Mr. King. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. That is one of the enlight- 
ening things of being with your Committee, sir. You want to be 
sure that everyone is heard. 

It is gratifying to have the Committee provide such early consid- 
eration of this significant legislation. As I am sure you are well 
aware. President Clinton has indicated that Hatch Act reform is 
long overdue, and that the right to participate in the political proc- 
ess should be restored to Federal and postal workers. With that in 
mind, Mr. Chairman, I would like to review the way in which 
S. 185 proposes to achieve that goal. 

First, in an effort to end the longstanding and pervasive confu- 
sion with regard to political activity by Federal employees, S. 185 
would amend the current law to draw a bright line between per- 
missible and impermissible activities by making clear distinctions 
between activity on the job and activity that is off-duty and away 
from the workplace. 

For example, for the first time in more than 50 years, employees 
would be allowed to work voluntarily on their own time for the can- 
didates of their choice. They would be permitted to stuff" envelopes, 
as you say, distribute campaign literature, and even participate in 
the management of political campaigns. On the other hand, all po- 
litical activity on the job would be prohibited, including the wear- 
ing of campaign buttons, which is generally permitted today. 

Beyond the on-duty/off-duty distinction, however, certain prohibi- 
tions in existing law would be retained. Under S. 185, Federal em- 
ployees still would be barred from running for office in partisan 
elections and from soliciting political contributions from either the 
general public or subordinate employees. Perhaps most signifi- 
cantly, the coercion of one's subordinates would still be banned. 
The bill, in fact, would not only retain all existing prohibitions 
against the abuse of an employee's official position in an effort to 
influence others, but would also strengthen the criminal penalties 
for those convicted of such abuse. 

Protection of employees is a critical element in maintaining a 
balance between the freedom to participate and the encroachment 
of political influence. If anything, further broadening of protections 
for employees might be considered. In particular, section 3303 of 
title 5, United States Code, the current provision barring rec- 
ommendations by Senators and Representatives for individuals 
who are applying for competitive service jobs, could be strength- 
ened in a number of ways. 



For example, it could be extended to cover individuals appljdng 
for certain career-type excepted service jobs, so-called Schedule A 
and Schedule B positions in the excepted service that are not con- 
fidential or policy-determining, as a rule, but are excluded fi-om the 
competitive service only because they cannot, for a variety of legiti- 
mate reasons, be subject to competitive examining procedures. That 
does not seem to justify excluding them from the protections avail- 
able to other employees. The same rationale also could be used to 
extend protections to career members of the Senior Executive Serv- 
ice. 

In addition, the scope of the protection against political inter- 
ference could be widened to reach other personnel actions such as 
promotions, assignments, and transfers. A good example of a more 
extensive and detailed provision is Section 1002 of Title 39, United 
States Code, which bars political recommendations for postal em- 
ployees. That section covers a broader range of personnel actions 
and prohibits recommendations not only from members of Con- 
gress, but also from certain other political sources. It also provides 
specific enforcement authority to address violations. It is a model 
well worth considering, Mr. Chairman. 

I appreciate this opportunity to address the Committee on this 
important matter and I will be glad to answer any of the questions 
that you may have to the best of my ability. Mr. Chairman, I want 
to apologize for being tardy. I was victimized by my own arrogance 
to think that I was going to get an elevator faster than any other 
citizen. 

[The prepared statement of Mr. King follows:] 

Prepared Statement of James B. King 

I am pleased to appear before you today to present the views of the Office of Per- 
sonnel Management on S. 185, the Hatch Act Reform Amendments of 1993. It is 
gratifying to have the committee provide such early consideration of this significant 
legislation. As I am sure you are well aware, President Clinton has indicated that 
Hatch Act reform is long overdue, and that the right to participate in the political 
process should be restored to Federal and Postal workers. With that in mind, I 
would like to review the way in which S. 185 proposes to achieve that goal. 

First, in an effort to end the long-standing and pervasive confusion with regard 
to political activity by Federal employees, S. 185 would amend the current law to 
draw a bright line between permissible and impermissible activities by making clear 
distinctions between activity on the job and activity that is off-duty and away from 
the workplace. 

For example, for the first time in more than 50 years, employees would be allowed 
to work voluntarily, on their own time, for the candidates of their choice. They 
would be permitted to stuff envelopes, distribute campaign literature, and even par- 
ticipate in the management of political campaigns. On the other hand, all political 
activity on the job would be prohibited, including the wearing of campaign buttons, 
which is generally permitted today. 

Beyond the on-duty/ofF-duty distinction, however, certain prohibitions in existing 
law would be retained. Under S. 185, Federal employees still would be barred from 
running for office in partisan elections, and from soliciting political contributions 
from either the general public or subordinate employees. Perhaps most significantly, 
the coercion of one's subordinates would still be banned. The bill, in fact, would not 
only retain all existing prohibitions against the abuse of an employee's official posi- 
tion in an effort to influence others, but would also strengthen the criminal pen- 
alties for those convicted of such abuse. 

This protection of employees is a critical element in maintaining a balance be- 
tween the freedom to participate and the encroachment of political influence. If any- 
thing, further broadening of protections for employees might be considered. In par- 
ticular, section 3303 of Title 5, United States Code, the current provision barring 
recommendations by Senators and Representatives for individuals who are applying 



for competitive service jobs, could be strengthened in a number of ways. For exam- 
ple, it could be extended to cover individuals applying for certain career-type ex- 
cepted service jobs. So-called Schedule A and Schedule B positions in the excepted 
service are not confidential or policy determining, but are excluded from the com- 
petitive service only because they cannot, for a variety of reasons, be subject to com- 
petitive examining procedures. That does not seem to justify excluding them from 
the protections available to other employees. The same rationale also could be used 
to extend protections to ceu-eer members of the Senior Executive Service. 

In addition, the scope of the protection against political interference could be wid- 
ened to reach other personnel actions such as promotions, assignments, and trans- 
fers. A good example of a more extensive and detailed provision is Section 1002 of 
Title 39, United States Code, which bars political recommendations for Postal Serv- 
ice employees. That section covers a broader range of personnel actions and pro- 
hibits recommendations not only from Members of Congress but also from certain 
other political sources. It also provides specific enforcement authority to address vio- 
lations. It is a model well worth considering. 

I appreciate having this opportunity to address the committee on this important 
matter and I will be glad to answer any questions you may have. 

Chairman Glenn. OPM has a new regulatory policy at this 
point. 

Mr. King, as you know, the House-passed version of Hatch Act 
reform is different from the Senate's, quite different. The House 
bill would allow Federal and postal employees to run for partisan 
elective office and would allow them to solicit campaign contribu- 
tions from the general public. What is the administration's position 
on these two provisions? 

Mr. King. I know the administration supports the reforms of the 
Hatch Act, and I understand that they would approve any— I know 
the President suggested he would approve whatever came out of 
your conference, Mr. Chairman. So whatever the Congress decides 
they would like, I believe this President will support. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, you are not taking a position, then, be- 
tween the House bill — they are quite different — the administration 
is not taking a position, then, between the Senate and the House 
bills as to which they would prefer or what provisions they would 
like out of each one? 

Mr. King. Not with me, sir. I made the inquiry and the response 
I received is what I have shared with you, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Glenn. Under the current Hatch Act, Federal employ- 
ees are allowed to make monetary contributions to political can- 
didates. However, they are prohibited from making in-kind political 
contributions, such as just stuffing envelopes or answering phones 
anonymously, or whatever. Critics of Hatch Act reform comment 
that by lifting these prohibitions of in-kind contributions. Federal 
employees would somehow be subject to more political coercion. 

Do you believe that allowing Federal employees to make in-kind 
political contributions on their own time now, strictly on their own 
time, will expose them to danger? 

Mr. King. If there were a danger, I would have been a victim of 
that industrial accident many years ago, Mr. Chairman. No, I do 
not. 

Chairman Glenn. Do you believe that allowing some limited, 
non-visible activity such as stuffing envelopes in the back room of 
a store front campaign office, just as an example, will somehow 
open the flood gates to political coercion and abuse of public office? 

Mr. King. Not as a thrust of the legislation, as I understand it, 
particularly with the willingness the Committee has expressed 



8 

right from the beginning that if they saw anything happening, they 
would move on it immediately. Therefore, I don't have a concern in 
that area, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Glenn. Some opponents of the bill also have said that 
whatever political activity at whatever level is allowed for Federal 
employees, it will become more what is required of them because 
employees want to please their boss. In other words, it won't be 
that voluntary. Do you see any problem with that? 

Mr. King. Well, I don't know, Mr. Chairman. I mean, we have— 
I am trying to recollect — we have the Combined Federal Campaign, 
we have food drives, we have blood drives. I am thinking of the 
most charitable and compassionate sorts of approaches and if we 
get an over-enthusiastic manager promoting them, we hear from 
the employees. I seriously doubt if they are going to be put upon 
in this context. If employees are willing to complain about coercion 
in these other instances, we are certainly going to hear about it on 
this. What I am saying, Mr. Chairman, to be more direct, so far 
public employees have not indicated that they are a silent group 
by any stretch of anyone's imagination. 

Chairman Glenn. Maybe we are insulated a little bit on the Hill 
here. I don't know, but I hear very few complaints today that there 
is political coercion going on. In fact, I think probably today in the 
Federal workforce it may be almost non-existent. Do you beUeve 
this is due to Hatch Act provisions or are there other factors which 
weigh in as well? 

Mr. King. I think the Hatch Act certainly has a dampening effect 
on participation. I also believe that there has been a tradition be- 
cause it is unknown. So the assumption is — I know when I first 
came into Federal service, the statement was that if you are a Fed- 
eral employee, you can't participate in anything in politics at all, 
if you will, in the election process, and I think the ordinary worker 
never bothered to go and read the particular sections. They merely 
took that as the rule and I think an awful lot of them have func- 
tioned that way. 

Chairman Glenn. Some critics of Hatch Act reform contend that 
the law must remain in its current form as the protections afforded 
by the Act are critical to the public perception and confidence in 
the impartial, even-handed conduct of Government business. If this 
reform is to take place, these opponents of reform say that we 
should at least exempt certain groups in sensitive positions, as they 
are called, such as law enforcement officers. 

Law enforcement officers at the State and local level enjoy poHti- 
cal freedoms. Their salaries are paid for by taxpayer dollars. They 
are supposed to act impartially to enforce the laws of their particu- 
lar jurisdictions. In 1990, I remember Mr. Bush in Boston, sur- 
rounded by almost a sea of blue-uniformed police officers, accepting 
their endorsement for President of the United States. One would 
think that that image could affect the public's confidence and per- 
ception that the police are enforcing the law on an even-handed 
basis. 

Yet, no supporters of Michael Dukakis complained that the police 
were dehberately targeting them for harassment. Furthermore, no 
opponents of Hatch Act reform called for a Hatch of the police. I 
would point out that under S. 185 Federal and postal employees 



could not rally around political candidates wearing a uniform, so 
we tighten up some in that respect. 

What is the administration's position, Mr. King, on exempting 
certain groups, not just local police which I have been talking 
about, but some of our own law enforcement officers at the Federal 
level? 

Mr. King. The official administration position is that no agencies 
or group of employees should be excluded from the provisions of the 
Hatch Act reform legislation. The employees of the Federal Elec- 
tions Commission have been excluded by H.R. 20, as passed by the 
House of Representatives. The administration opposes excluding 
any additional employees or agencies. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you. Critics say that without the Hatch 
Act excuse. Federal employees would confront very subtle pressures 
to contribute time to partisan causes. Inevitably, these critics pre- 
dict that the civil service will be politicized. However, Hatch Act re- 
strictions were lifted on State and local employees almost 20 years 
ago and such politicization has not occurred. In light of this his- 
tory, do you believe that reform of the Hatch Act will lead to 
politicization of the civil service? 

Mr. King. I don't beheve so. 

Chairman Glenn. It has been suggested by some Senators that 
each agency and department should conduct a referendum of all 
employees to determine if Hatch Act reform should apply to them. 
Does the administration support placing Constitutional rights of 
Federal employees up to a simple majority vote? 

Mr. King. To the best of my knowledge, no, and neither do I, Mr. 
Chairman. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you very much. That is all the ques- 
tions I have. 

Senator Roth. 

Senator RoTH. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. It is indeed a pleasure 
to welcome you, Mr. King. 

Mr. King. Thank you, Senator. 

Senator Roth. Let me, if I may, read my opening statement, Mr. 
Chairman. I regret that I am late, but I had another meeting to 
goto. 

OPENING STATEMENT OF SENATOR ROTH 

As President Clinton and the Nation celebrates the 250th anni- 
versary of the birth of Thomas Jefferson, the first Democratic 
President, it is an appropriate time to consider his views on the re- 
lationship between Government and Government employees. Jeffer- 
son, one of the very first people to comment on the issue of em- 
ployee political activity, observed that it violated the spirit of the 
Constitution for Federal officials to engage in electioneering. 

Despite Jefferson's directive and the passage of the Civil Service 
Act of 1883, problems with political activity continued to arise. In 
1886, President Cleveland issued an executive order which warned 
Federal employees against the use of their official positions in an 
attempt to control political movements. In 1907, President Theo- 
dore Roosevelt amended the executive order to prohibit employees 
from taking an active part in political management or in political 
campaigns. 



10 

In spite of all the efforts of our various Presidents through the 
years, our Nation never licked the problem of the spoils system 
until a Democratic Congress, under the leadership of a Democratic 
President, enacted the Hatch Act in 1939. Since then, the Hatch 
Act has protected the Federal employee, fostered a more effective 
workforce, and enhanced the confidence of the citizenry in the non- 
partisan administration of Government. 

S. 185 not only repeals the heart of the Hatch Act, but it elimi- 
nates the ability of future Presidents, at least as I read the bill, to 
protect employees from subtle coercive pressures and to provide the 
American people even-handed administration of Government pro- 
grams. Thus, S. 185 is far worse than simple repeal in that it would 
make illegal the actions of a Thomas Jefferson or a Theodore Roo- 
sevelt in protecting Federal employees and in serving the American 
public. 

S. 185 does not merely reverse the last 54 years, but truly all 204 
years of our experience. Once employees are allowed to engage in 
partisan political activity, including direct involvement in cam- 
paign, no anti-coercion statute will be able to protect them from 
subtle pressures. What will be allowed will become expected, and 
as it is humsin nature to want to get ahead, employees will feel ob- 
ligated to participate in partisan campaigns in order to gain a pro- 
motion or a bonus. 

As the Congress and the administration consider providing Fed- 
eral employees with greater flexibility to hire, classify, promote, 
and evaluate — an authority that I believe is necessary in order to 
make the Federal Government more effective and efficient — we 
must be even more alert to the dangers of this legislation, for re- 
pealing the Hatch Act's basic protections will create an environ- 
ment where employees will come to expect that political consider- 
ations, not merit, weighs heavily in the decisions which impact 
their everyday lives. 

The Hatch Act is working to prevent such an environment, but 
the temptation to abuse is at the gate. The temptation of using 
civil servants to perform political acts is ever-present. One need 
look no further than Washington, D.C., and the recent allegations 
being investigated by the Office of Special Counsel to understand 
this. 

In addition, special counsel prosecutions in New York and Ten- 
nessee demonstrate that prohibitions alone, such as those in S. 185, 
will not prevent coercion. If every bit of coercion or pressure were 
detectable, this would be less a problem, but here the party being 
coerced is unlikely to complain about it because it will lead to their 
own possible advancement, and there are those who will engage in 
partisan activity against their will in order to obtain favor even 
when such conduct is not coerced or even solicited. This latter situ- 
ation illustrates the failure of the theory that in this context one 
can permit activity and prohibit abuse. 

Proponents of S. 185 believe they have answered the question of 
how to draw a bright line between permissible and prohibited con- 
duct. They would permit partisan activity off-duty and prohibit 
such conduct on-duty. The problem is that this so-called bright line 
has little to do with concerns of subtle pressures. The fact that an 



11 

employee engages in political conduct off duty does not answer the 
question whether the employee has been pressured on duty. 

In addition, the bright line does nothing to counter the public's 
perception of a partisan Government workforce. Federal employees 
involved in political activity will become identified with partisan 
causes while off duty. Even the Washington Post, the guardian of 
free speech, prohibits its reporters and editors from becoming ac- 
tively involved in political caucuses off duty because it depends on 
the appearance of non-partisan reporting the news for its credibil- 
ity. Surely, its reporters have political beliefs, but those beliefs are 
suppressed in order to prevent the public from perceiving that it 
leans one way or the other. This is even more important for the 
Federal Government, whose employees make thousands of deci- 
sions a day which impact upon millions of people. 

In my opinion. President Clinton is the very first President in 
this century who favors signing S. 185, so there is a good chance 
that this legislation will become law. Therefore, we should carefully 
examine the details of this bill to see if the legislation can be im- 
proved. We are in a very different context and I think we need to 
think about this very seriously. 

The arguments have heretofore been made in the broadest po- 
lemical terms — First Amendment rights versus protecting against 
the spoils system. Thus, for example, we have never really consid- 
ered fully whether all types of employees should be treated the 
same under this legislation. As the Committee and the Senate con- 
siders S. 185, such questions deserve our careful consideration. 

Prepared Statement of Senator Roth 

As President Clinton and the Nation celebrates the 250th anniversary of the birth 
of Thomas Jefferson, the first Democratic President, it is an appropriate time to con- 
sider his views on the relationship between government and government employees. 

Jefferson, one of the very first people to comment on the issue of employee politi- 
cal activity, observed that it violated the "spirit of the Constitution" for Federal em- 
ployees to engage in "electioneering". 

Despite Jefferson's directive, and the passage of the Civil Service Act of 1883, 
problems with political activity continued to arise. In 1886, President Cleveland is- 
sued an executive order which warned Federal employees against the "use of their 
official positions in attempts to control political movements." In 1907, President 
Theodore Roosevelt amended the executive order to prohibit employees from taking 
an "active part in political management or in political campaigns." 

In spite of all the efforts of various Presidents through the years, our nation never 
licked the problem of the spoils system until a Democratic Congress under the lead- 
ership of a Democratic President enacted the Hatch Act in 1939. Since then, the 
Hatcn Act has protected the Federal employee, fostered a more effective workforce, 
and enhanced tne confidence of the citizenry in the non-partisan administration of 
government. 

S. 185 not only repeals the heart of the Hatch Act, but it eliminates the ability 
of future Presidents — as I read the bill — to protect employees from subtle coercive 
pressures and to provide the American people evenhanded administration of govern- 
ment programs. Thus S. 185 is far worse tnan simple repeal in that it would make 
illegal the actions of a Thomas Jefferson or a Theodore Roosevelt in protecting Fed- 
eral employees and in serving the American public. S. 185 does not merely reverse 
the last 54 years but truly all 204 years of our experience. 

Once employees are allowed to engage in partisan political activity including di- 
rect involvement in campaigns, no anti-coercion statute will be able to protect them 
from subtle pressures. What will be allowed will become expected. 

As it is human nature to want to get ahead, employees will feel obligated to par- 
ticipate in partisan campaigns in order to gain a promotion or a bonus. As the Con- 
gress and the Administration consider providing Federal managers with greater 
flexibility to hire, classify, promote, and evaluate, an authority that I believe is nec- 
essary in order to make the Federal Government more effective and efficient, we 



12 

must be even more alert to the dangers of this legislation. For repealing the Hatch 
Act's basic protections will create an environment where employees will come to ex- 
pect that political consideration, not merit, weigh heavily in the decisions which im- 
pact their every day lives. 

The Hatch Act is working to prevent such an environment, but the temptation to 
abuse is at the gate. The temptation of using civil servants to perform political acts 
is ever present. One need look no further than Washington, D.C., and the recent 
allegations being investigated the Office of Special Counsel, to understand this. In 
addition. Special Counsel prosecutions in New York and Tennessee demonstrate 
that prohibitions alone — such as those in S. 185 — will not prevent coercion. 

If every bit of coercion or pressure were detectable, this would be less of a prob- 
lem. But here, the party being coerced is unlikely to complain about it because it 
will lead to their own possible advancement. And there are those who will engage 
in partisan activity against their will in order to obtain favor even when such con- 
duct is not coerced or even solicited. This latter situation illustrates the failure of 
the theory that in this context one can permit activity and prohibit abuse. 

Proponents of S. 185 believe they have answered the question of how to draw a 
bright line between permissible and prohibited conduct. They would permit partisan 
activity "off-duty" and prohibit such conduct "on duty." The problem is that this co- 
called bright line has little to do with concerns of subtle pressures. The fact that 
an employee engages in political conduct off-duty does not answer the question 
whether the employee has oeen pressured on-duty. 

In addition, tne bright-line does nothing to counter the public's perception of a 

Partisan government workforce. Federal employees involved in political activity will 
ecome identified with partisan causes while off duty. Even the Washington Post, 
the guardian of free speech, prohibits its reporters and editors from becoming ac- 
tively involved in political causes off duty because it depends on the appearance of 
non-partisan reporting of the news for its credibility. 

Surely its reporters have political beliefs, but these beliefs are suppressed in order 
to prevent the public from perceiving that it leans one way or the other. This is even 
more important for the Federal Government, whose employees make thousands of 
decisions a day which impact millions of people. 

In my opinion. President Clinton is tne very first President who favors signing 
S. 185. So there is now a good chance that this bill will become law. Therefore, we 
should carefully examine the details of this bill to see if the legislation can be im- 
proved. We are in a very different context. We need to think about this very seri- 
ously. 

The arguments have heretofore been made in the broadest, polemical terms — First 
Amendment rights versus protecting against the spoils system. Thus, for example, 
we have never really considered fully whether all tjrpes of employees should be 
treated the same under the legislation. As the Committee and Senate consider 
S. 185, such questions deserve our careful consideration. 

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

Senator Roth. That is the end of my prepared statement, Mr. 
Chairman, but I do have a series of questions. 

Chairman GLENN. Go ahead. I have completed my questions, so 
go ahead. That is fine. 

Senator ROTH. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. King, during your 
confirmation hearing you stated that you would like to see some 
stronger language in the bill on the prohibitions of reaching into 
the career service for promotions and other things going through 
elected officials. Your testimony today recommends statutory lan- 
guage currently part of Title 39 governing the Postal Service. 

Even if members of Congress are prohibited from making such 
contacts, isn't there a bigger cause for concern that such pressures 
will emanate from the ^A^te House and Executive Branch political 
appointees? Obviously, we are not only talking about this White 
House, but future White Houses as well. 

Mr. King. Well, Mr. Chairman, I think the so-called Malek pe- 
riod under President Nixon was when we had an existing Hatch 
Act, and probably the greatest documented abuses took place with- 
in the civil service. I don't think we have seen guiything like that 



13 

since. Part of it is that there is a governance, as you well know, 
among us in which we try to carry out the laws as put before us. 
I don't see where this change would enhance a Malek operation op- 
erating out of the White House to skew the civil service system in 
a partisan fashion. I don't think that this would enhance it, and 
surely the existing law didn't stop it. 

Senator RoTH. You don't see it possible 

Mr. King. I don't 

Senator RoTH. As I say, we are not talking about legislation that 
just applies to this particular White House. We are talking about 
the long term. 

Mr. King. But that is why I picked Mr. Malek because there has 
been enough time gone by, almost 20 years, and what we saw was 
something that happened in that period with the existing legisla- 
tion, and because, I think, a number of people were sensitized to 
what happened, I think we collectively have worked to avoid that 
happening again. So it wasn't the legislation itself that framed it. 
There was a public attitude and a support by people such as your- 
self. 

Senator Roth. Let me ask this. You, in your statement, called for 
the inclusion in the bill for additional protections. Could you pro- 
vide to the Committee the language that you think would achieve 
that, and could you make sure that the language also deals with 
undue influence by the Executive as well as the Congress? 

Mr. King. I would put forth the language that I recommended. 
Senator, which was the present postal legislation that exists. If it 
is felt you need to go further, I yield. 

Senator ROTH. The problem with that is it only applies to Con- 
gress. 

Mr. King. Right, sir, the Congress and other elected officials and 
party officials. 

Senator ROTH. So what I am suggesting is we ought to have the 
same kind of safeguards that apply. 

Mr. King. We could draw some other line, I am certain. 

Senator ROTH. It is my understanding that you stated before I 
arrived that the President would sign either the House or Senate 
bill? 

Mr. King. That is what I have been told, sir. 

Senator ROTH. Now, under S. 185 United States military person- 
nel will remain Hatched. Does the administration support this ex- 
clusion, and why draw the line with military personnel? 

Mr. King. I am only responsible for the civilian workforce, sir, 
so I haven't been drawn into that. Senator. 

Senator RoTH. But you are here to represent the administration 
on this legislation and this legislation does except the military per- 
sonnel from its inclusion. Why is that? Why shouldn't military per- 
sonnel be covered under this reform when we are, I think, except- 
ing employees of the Defense Intelligence Agency, the CIA? Why 
should there be that exception? 

Mr. King. I would get back to you on that. Senator. I focused on 
my responsibilities, which are that of the civilian workforce, sir, 
but I will try and get back to you on it. 



14 



Insert for the Record 



Currently, military personnel are covered by Department of Defense Directive 
1344.10, which is entitled Political Activities by Members of the Armed Forces. We 
would defer to the Department of Defense with regard to the advisability of any 
changes in that directive. 

Chairman Glenn. Will the Senator yield? 

Senator Roth. Yes, 

Chairman Glenn. Just as a comment, military personnel are not 
Hatched now. The Hatch Act only applies to civilian personnel, I 
believe. 

Senator ROTH. Yes, but my understanding is that there is a simi- 
lar code, and so if 

Chairm£in Glenn. We are not dealing with that code, though, 
here. This is not 

Senator Roth. Well, I am asking the question why aren't we. If 
one feels strongly that civilian employees are being denied their 
Constitutional rights, the political right to be active, why aren't 
there the same concerns? This Committee certainly has jurisdiction 
over military matters in this regard as well as civilians, so it is not 
a lack of jurisdiction on the part of the Committee. What I am sug- 
gesting is that it seems to me clear that if you are going to go this 
direction, powerful arguments can be made that it ought to apply 
to military as well. 

Let me ask you this, Mr. King. Does it give you any concern that 
domestic law enforcement agencies — the FBI, the Justice Depart- 
ment, the Internal Revenue Service — will be un-Hatched as well? 
Does that give you any concern, or would you be willing to consider 
some special legislation that would continue to Hatch or at least 
cover those employees in sensitive positions? 

Mr. King. Senator, at this time I think this is really left to the 
Committee. The question was directly to me and the civilian 
workforce. I don't see any difficulty at this time. There may be 
compelling reasons on an individual case basis, and I am sure they 
will come forth. 

Senator RoTH. You don't see any difference between the FBI and, 
say, GSA employees? 

Mr. King. I think part of the thrust of the question, Senator — 
and, please, I don't want to misread it, but bear with me. The 
thrust of the question is does this law compel people to go out and 
conduct themselves 

Senator Roth. That is not the question I am asking here. 

Mr. King. Well, that is really the direction this goes. 

Senator RoTH. No, and the question I am asking is do you see 
any special considerations arising in respect, say, to the FBI or 
Justice Department, 

Mr. King. Not necessarily, sir. 

Senator ROTH. Not necessarily at all? It doesn't give you any con- 
cern that they, in their off-duty hours, might campaign very ac- 
tively in a partisan way? You don't think that that will have any 
impact as far as the public is concerned as to whether or not the 
laws are being enforced in a non-partisan way? 

Mr. King. I don't see a giant wave of law enforcement types out 
stuffing envelopes, no. 



15 

Senator ROTH. But you admit that it is possible that someone of 
them would do it? 

Mr. King. I have learned from my investigatory days that any- 
thing is possible. I am just not certain 

Senator Roth. What about the Internal Revenue Service? Does 
it give you any pause for concern that an individual working for 
IRS is going out collecting funds, for example? If that agent was 
reviewing your tax payments, would it bother you or put any spe- 
cial pressure on you if he asked or she asked for a political con- 
tribution? 

Mr. King. Well, you mean if someone, anyone, asked me for a 
kickback, $50, or, how about buying me dinner? I don't see any dif- 
ference. I am suggesting, Senator, that the people in our agencies 
who will raise the devil if you put pressure on them to give blood, 
to give to our Combined Federal Campaign operations for charity — 
I can't imagine them remaining mute during the kinds of things 
you are describing. That is beyond my imagination. Now, possibly, 
they will. I don't know. I couldn't possibly predict every situation 
that might occur. 

Senator Roth. Well, why do you think some of our past Presi- 
dents, including Jefferson — and, of course, this legislation was en- 
acted during Franklin D. Roosevelt's administration. Has people's 
conduct changed so in the meantime that the problems that we are 
seeing being developed in the past couldn't develop in the future? 

Mr. King. Well, first, I think the politics of my youth and the 
way it was practiced and the politics of today are totally different. 
Our budgets in those happy days were probably 75, 80 percent 
what they called field organization. Today, it is 90 percent elec- 
tronic media. It is straight to the media. Computers have replaced 
people. That really was the evaporation. I think Mr, Broder and 
others have written some very distinguished texts on what has 
happened to the American political system and the American politi- 
cal party. 

What I see here is not a partisan effort. What I see is a request 
that the ordinary citizen working for our Government can partici- 
pate in a democratic system in a different level. I think the politics 
of the time and the context have changed dramatically. Senator. 

Senator ROTH. Well, of course, some very distinguished public in- 
terest groups such as Common Cause would strongly disagree, and 
a number of newspapers such as the New York Times have indi- 
cated that it would be a serious change to un-Hatch the Federal 
employee. 

The point I am tr5ring to make here is that if we are going to pro- 
ceed that direction, it seems to me obvious certain agencies and 
certain positions which are particularly sensitive — that at least we 
ought to try to shape any such legislation in such a manner that 
it will limit the problems that can, I think, frankly, be foreseen. 

Now, according to a survey several years ago by the Senior Exec- 
utive Association, 74 percent opposed change in the Hatch Act. The 
Federal Executive Institute Alumni Association surveyed their 
members on a series of issues, including Hatch Act reform. Out of 
more than 1,300 responses to their question, over 60 percent op- 
posed changes to the Hatch Act. Why, Mr. King, do you think a 
majority of these employees opposed change in the Act? 



16 

Mr. King. I must be candid with you. Anytime anyone suggests 
change, it scares me, so I would assume they are no different. 
Change is a threat. 

Senator Roth. Well, these are your top professional people. They 
are not naive or untrained. They are, frankly, as sophisticated a 
group as you will find, in my judgment, either in the private or 
public sector. So I don't think you can put it down on a basis that 
they just fear charge or are ignorant of what the change would 
mean. I think it shows that among our professionals there is some 
very, very genuine concern about this proposed change. 

Mr. King, S. 185 would allow Federal employees to solicit politi- 
cal contributions from fellow members of their employee organiza- 
tions who have a PAC. H.R. 20 provides even broader authority for 
Federal employees to solicit money contributions. The prohibition 
against solicitation in current law was not established in the Hatch 
Act, but rather in an 1876 law which prohibited certain employees 
from requesting, giving to, or receiving from any other employee 
money for political purposes. Is the administration prepared to 
overturn 100 years of precedent in this area? 

Mr. King. Yes. 

Senator ROTH. Let me ask you this question. There is a lot of 
talk at this time about doing away with PAC funds. Isn't it some- 
what inconsistent to propose to just do the reverse with the Gov- 
ernment? Isn't this another illustration where Government treats 
itself specially rather than by the common rules of the public? 

Mr. King. Well, I think you are talking about public financing as 
a remedy, but that is a separate issue. 

Senator Roth. We are not talking public financing, Mr. King. We 
are talking about contributions from the individual PACs. 

Mr. King. But with public financing, you don't need PACs, you 
don't need anyone out there collecting money at all, and that would 
solve that problem. 

Senator Roth. Well, I don't think any recent proposal has pro- 
posed ftiU public fiinding. Much of the criticism of current cam- 
paign financing has been these PAC fijnds. The question I am ask- 
ing is isn't it inconsistent, isn't it another good illustration of Gov- 
ernment handling themselves specially when they are moving in 
another direction in respect to those employed in the private sec- 
tor? 

Mr. King. No. They are mainstreaming as far as I can see. We 
are taking employees and we are giving them the same privileges 
that are enjoyed, whether you work for Ford or IBM, whether you 
work for the executive PAC at IBM or the executive PAC of any 
of the corporations in America. 

Senator ROTH. Let me ask you this question more specifically. Is 
it inconsistent to say in the private sector, as is being proposed, 
that PAC funding is illegal and at the very same time for us to 
make it legal in the Government sector? I am not talking about 
public financing. I am just talking about PAC funding, whether it 
is Government or the private sector. Shouldn't we treat the Gov- 
ernment employees insofar as PAC funds are concerned the same 
as we do the private sector? 

Mr. King. I don't see any difficulty with that. 

Senator RoTH. Would you recommend that? 



17 

Mr. King. But I don't understand the implications that you are 
raising. I am not an expert on election law or election financing. 
I have a knowledge of it from a practicum, but not from the 
legal 

Senator Roth. What I am suggesting is that if we make it illegal 
in the private sector to have PAC funds, shouldn't the same illegal- 
ity apply to Federal employees? 

Mr. King. What I am hearing is whatever applies to the private 
sector should apply to the public in that sense? 

Senator ROTH. As far as PAC contributions are concerned. 

Mr. King. Well, I think you have got to put it in context. I am 
not upset by that, sir, if there is election campaign reform on fi- 
nancing. 

Senator RoTH. Would you recommend it? 

Mr. King. Would I recommend public finance? Yes, sir. 

Senator ROTH. No, no, I am not talking public financing. I am 
talking about PAC funds. 

Mr. King. But I am saying PAC funds are there because there 
is no public financing. Otherwise, only the wealthy can play. 

Senator Roth. One does not necessarily depend on the other. 
Again, I want to keep this question very simple. You have unions 
in Government and you have unions in the private sector. Now, if 
we tell the unions in the private sector that they can't solicit PAC 
funds to contribute, shouldn't we do the same thing in respect to 
Federal employees and Federal unions? 

Mr. King. Whatever the law of the land is, I would certainly sup- 
port. 

Senator RoTH. Would you recommend that it be consistent? 

Mr. King. That PACs be barred from participating in politics? I 
have no trouble. Senator. 

Senator RoTH. Would you recommend that if PAC funds are ille- 
gal in the private sector, they would also be illegal 

Mr. King. If PACs were illegal in the entire private sector, I 
don't see any reason why there wouldn't be continuity. 

Senator RoTH. The President and the Vice President and many 
members of this Committee have expressed great interest in 
reinventing Government. I think you share this belief 

Mr. King. I do. 

Senator ROTH [continuing]. And that we must reform how Fed- 
eral employees are hired, are classified, promoted, and evaluated. 
As we provide the supervisory flexibility that I think you and I 
both think is necessary to make the Government more efficient, we 
must be even more alert to the dangers of this bill. Repealing the 
Hatch Act's basic protections while increasing supervisory discre- 
tion oyer employment could create an environment where employ- 
ees will come to expect that political consideration, not merit, 
weighs in the decisions which impact their everyday lives. Does 
this concern you at all? 

If we are going to give broad discretionary power to supervisory 
employees to hire, to promote, to discipline, to discharge, and we 
are going to open the system to pohtical machinations, are you at 
all concerned that politics rather than merit might become a factor 
in many cases? 



18 

Mr. King. Mr. Chairman, I have worked in both systems. I gen- 
erally find that who you are working for and the decisions that are 
made are often made not for partisan reasons. That has generally 
been my experience. It is not partisan reasons. You go into an 
agency and work with the people who are effective, wherever they 
came from. If they are career employees, you move forward with 
that. If they are non-career employees, the statement that I have 
had so that I don't sound unusual is the broom that swept you in 
is here to sweep you out. Other than that, the operation continues 
as is, and that is what has given us a very strong civil service. 

There have been attempts to reach in in the past, as you know. 
Senator, and they were to some degree successful. Part of it is be- 
cause we are dealing with a group of innocents. If you put a wolf 
in among the lambs, unless they have read their Bible, it is un- 
likely they are going to lie down with them. They will slaughter 
them, and in this case they did, so that the system can be vulner- 
able if it is left and it is treated in an indifferent fashion. 

But we have in our States, in our counties, and in our local gov- 
ernments a very, very different style of management and the politi- 
cal participation in the vast majority of those systems works, what- 
ever party happens to be in charge. It is really a question of the 
dedication of the individuals involved and their mandate and the 
oversight that is provided. 

Senator RoTH. Well, I just have to say, Mr. King, it bothers me 
deeply. Again, I am not talking about this four years or the next, 
but as one who strongly believes we have to reform Government to 
make it more efficient and open the doors to broader discretion on 
the part of supervision, I think at the same time opening the door 
to political machinations raises a very serious question and I fear, 
frankly, could jeopardize the reform that I think is so essential to 
the future. 

One final question, Mr. Chairm£in. On January 27, 1993, the De- 
partment of Agriculture issued a press release entitled "Espy to 
Cut Washington Bureaucracy Before Closing USDA Field Offices." 
Less than a week later, the Department of Agriculture participated 
in a Democratic National Committee job fair. "Democratic Jobs Ga- 
lore," stated the Washington Post headline. 

Could you explain how less than a week after promising to cut 
Washington bureaucracy the department was seeking new employ- 
ees at a job fair for campaign and Presidential transition workers? 
Should we expect this kind of performance to become the more gen- 
ergd practice if this bill becomes law? 

Mr. King. Were these for non-career or for career, sir? 

Senator Roth. For either. 

Mr. King. For non-career, I think the doors are open for very 
wide discretion as to who is selected. For career, I think there are 
very clear policies for recruiting and the placement of career, and 
I support the present regulations for career in general terms, and 
for the non-careers, as I suggested. I think you will find that the 
Department of Agriculture has more non-career positions than al- 
most any other agency in Government. So I am not familiar with 
the story. 

Senator RoTH. This was just for career. 

Mr. King. This was for career? 



19 

Senator RoTH. That is correct. 

Mr. King. I would like to see it and I will get back to you on your 
question. I am not familiar with it and I don't think it is fair to 
the question not to be able to respond to it fully. 

Senator Roth. Well, I would appreciate it. 

Mr. King. Thank you, Senator. 

Insert for the Record 

The job fair was specifically intended as an opportunity for campaign workers to 
meet some of the transition staff at the various departments and agencies to pvirsue 
leads on political appointments in the new Administration. The Department of Agri- 
culture representatives attended only in connection with filling political appoint- 
ments in tnat department. As at many other job fairs, the Office of Personnel Man- 
agement's Washington Area Service Center (WASC) staff was asked to present in- 
formation to job fair participants on the Govemmentwide competition Civil Service 
hiring system, if any of them were interested in competing for regular Government 
jobs. 

Senator RoTH. Again, my concern, Mr. King, is that the public 
already is disenchanted with Government, disenchanted with the 
effectiveness of the Federal Government. What worries me at this 
stage when we hopefully are going to begin some major reforms 
that will reinvent and make Government more efficient is that if 
we open the door — not only open the door to political machinations, 
but make it impossible for this President or any future President 
to take steps to correct, we may be taking a step backward in gain- 
ing the cordfidence of the American public. 

Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you, Mr. King. 

Mr. King. Thank you. Senator. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you. Senator Roth. Just a couple of 
comments. As far as what people were asked about, as to whether 
they preferred changes in the Hatch Act, obviously people are not 
going to say just do away with the Hatch Act completely, and we 
are not proposing that. There is no proposal here that says we do 
away with the Hatch Act. What we do is try and make it fair. 

I repeat what I started off with that these are reforms of the 
Hatch Act, reforms only, £ind what we do is we make very tight 
laws of what a person can do on the job, tighter than they are now. 
We are strengthening the Hatch Act, and make tough penalties for 
violations. A possibility of 3 years in jail and a $5,000 fine, I be- 
lieve, is what we passed before when we passed this through the 
Senate, and I think Senator Roth supported that. If I recall, it was 
Senator Dole's proposal. I may be mistaken on that, but I think it 
was. 

So we have very tight restrictions of what you can do on the job, 
tighter now. You can wear a campaign button to work right now. 
You can't do that under this reform. Yet, off the job we say if you 
want to lick envelopes, if you want to participate in a campaign, 
very limited participation, well, that is OK, like every other Amer- 
ican does. When I think of all these horrible things that might hap- 
pen, I just don't believe that they are realistic at all. 

Let me address the military. That was brought up here a mo- 
ment ago. We looked at the military in 1990 and we talked to Sen- 
ator Nunn. He felt that if changes were going to be made in that 
area that they be addressed by the Armed Services Committee as 
well as possibly by this Committee. Military personnel are not 



20 

Hatched now. DOD does have its own regs, but let me tell you the 
reason for that. 

The reason is that military personnel are not personnel that go 
home at the end of the day and are off duty, basically. Military per- 
sonnel are viewed under the law and by military regulations as 
being on duty 24 hours a day. They are on call. They may go back 
to the barracks at 4:00, but they are just as subject to be called 
out at 6:00, 8:00, midnight, 2:00 in the morning, and so they are 
not looked at as having the normal civil service off-duty times that 
other people have. So that is one of the reasons why they come 
under a completely different set of regulations. 

Now, as far as IRS agents, Departnient of Justice officials, they 
cannot go out and raise funds from private citizens. I believe my 
distinguished colleague was suggesting — at least I took his ques- 
tions to suggest that they could. No one can. Civil service people 
under this thing would not be permitted to go out and solicit pri- 
vately for money, and so that wouldn't apply, whether you are De- 
partment of Justice, whether you are IRS, or whether you are any 
other civil servant in the Government of the United States. 

We went through some of these things before when we had the 
Hatch Act up before and our previous testimony on that seems to 
continue to be ignored, but those are the facts, no matter what else 
may be said about it. So, anyway, what we do is we basically tight- 
en up on Hatch Act on the job £uid we loosen up a little bit off the 
job, but with very careful controls on that. It is reform. 

It was stated earlier that this repeals the heart of the Hatch Act. 
I just don't see how any interpretation of S. 185 CEin say that we 
are repealing the heart of the Hatch Act when we tighten up on 
what can be done on the job and loosen up a few restrictions off 
the job. That is basically what this does. It is not all the great, hor- 
rendous things that it is made out to be. 

Another one I wanted to mention, too, is S. 185 would let Federal 
and postal PACs operate like every other PAC, and if campaign fi- 
nance reform eliminates PACs, then Federal and postal PACs 
would be eliminated, too. No one has proposed by this legislation 
or anything else that I know of that PACs would be permitted 
under this if other PACs were prohibited by other law, whatever 
it happens to be, and I certainly would fight against that kind of 
distinction. If PACs are outlawed, for whatever reason, then these 
PACs that people would have from employee unions or whatever 
would be eliminated, too. There is no proposal that we change that 
at all. 

So I just wanted to reiterate again that we really are tightening 
up in one area and making some minor reforms in another area, 
and so I look at this as strengthening the Hatch Act. You know, 
when we were on the floor with this last time someone had come 
up with, I think it was 1,500 or 3,000 different things that were 
anomalies, different ways that the Hatch Act had been considered 
in the past, and rules and regulations had been written where they 
were conflicting so much that people didn't know what they could 
do and what they couldn't do. 

Well, I agreed on the floor, as I recall, last time that most of 
those things, a lot of them, had been worked out, but some of them 
have not been worked out. Just a couple of examples I used in my 



21 

opening statement this morning: Anyone can write a $1,000 check 
to a Federal candidate of their choice, but that same person could 
not go down and sit down and stuff envelopes. If they don't have 
$1,000 to give and don't feel that their personal family finances 
would permit that, why can't they, in expressing their support for 
that candidate — if they don't have enough money, why can't they 
go down and stuff envelopes at the headquarters? Well, why should 
they be prohibited from doing that? 

Yet, this is looked at as something horrible that we are just try- 
ing to bring some equity to this. I am not trying to say that those 
1,500 things are still all out there, but some of them are and those 
are the things that we are trying to correct here and make this 
fair. This is no effort to make every public employee into a Demo- 
crat or a Republican or a Ross Perot supporter or an independent. 
All it is is just an attempt to bring some equity to this so that peo- 
ple in the civil service are not discriminated against unnecessarily, 
and that is all that this thing does. 

I say I come as a convert to this. I came to the Congress origi- 
nally some years ago dead set against any Hatch Act changes. 
When I looked at some of the ridiculous ways the Hatch Act had 
been interpreted, I thought it was so unfair that I went over to the 
other side and started supporting Hatch Act reform, and that is 
what we are doing here. These are rather minor reforms, as I see 
it. Yet, these reforms have been pointed out as being so horrendous 
that they are about to upset Government. I just don't see them as 
having that effect at all. 

Senator RoTH. Well, Mr. Chairman, I don't intend to carry on the 
debate, as we will have adequate opportunity to do that in the fu- 
ture. 

Chairman Glenn. I am sure we will. 

Senator ROTH. From my own point of view, I find it very hard 
to follow the argument that this is not basically undoing the Hatch 
Act, and let me say that as I indicated earlier, it is ironical to me. 
Last year in our campaign reform legislation, we did away with 
union-connected PACs, and yet here we are today proposing to do 
the opposite. 

It is significant to me that the most sophisticated professionals 
of the Federal employees do not support the change and, in fact, 
feel that the Hatch Act has and continues to work effectively. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, now, what was that poll on, if you would 
yield for just a second, because I don't know that there has been 
any poll at all that I have seen that really spells out exactly what 
we are talking about in this Act and then polls people as to what 
they think about it? 

Senator Roth. Well, this was basically on whether or not the 
Hatch Act should continue as is. 

Chairman Glenn. Yes, it should continue. I would vote with 
them on that. 

Senator Roth. As I say, I think most of them see this particular 
piece of legislation gutting the Hatch Act as we know it, and I 
think we can argue all day. You can point to those who favor your 
point of view. I can point to Common Cause, the New York Times, 
and others. 



22 

But in any event, we do, as you know, want to have additional 
hearings in order to have the opportunity to bring some witnesses 
on the other side so that we can fully explore this what I consider 
very critically important piece of legislation. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, let me address that. I hadn't planned to 
do this, but since you brought it up I will bring it up. I was going 
to talk to you privately about this, but I was handed a letter this 
morning that now requests an additional day of hearings at which 
there are going to be 4 or 5 or 6 additional witnesses brought in 
to testify in opposition to this. 

We originally planned to bring the Hatch Act up this year. We 
had a couple of years of previous debate about this. I felt that there 
was very little that was going to come out by new hearings, but we 
were duty-bound to have hearings and we scheduled those early on 
because we had had a lot of requests to bring the Hatch Act up and 
get it going. We wanted to get it on the agenda over there so that 
the Majority Leader could work it in at his discretion on what 
would be the best time. 

We had had support from the administration. We had had com- 
ments from the President and Vice President when they were still 
candidates about their support for Hatch Act reform, and we knew 
personally from their own personal comments that they wanted to 
bring this up fairly early, so I was trying to accommodate that. So 
I wanted to bring this up to accommodate everybody that had an 
interest in it. I didn't think there was anything brand new that 
was going to be brought out. So we had an original schedule on 
this, an original hearing, for 2 February. 

Now, I talked to staff about this and there was some objection 
on the other side, and so I agreed that a February 2nd hearing was 
a little bit fast on this thing if there was more discussion that was 
going to be needed on it, and it was questioned as to whether the 
0MB could do the job that it was supposed to do in that period of 
time in commenting on this. So we set it back a couple of weeks; 
we set it back to the 17th of February and announced that. 

Then I got a letter from Senator Roth on January 26 that re- 
quested a delay until the 0PM Director was nominated and was in 
place, and I thought that was reasonable. I didn't argue about that. 
I thought that was quite reasonable because 0PM was going to 
have to administer this whole thing, and so to have the new 0PM 
Director comment on this, I thought, was quite reasonable. So we 
set this back to wait until Mr. King or whoever the nominee was 
going to be — I believe we knew that he was about to be nominated 
at that time and so we set it back until Mr. King was in place. 

We waited until he was in place and had some time to get over 
there and get his feet on the ground, and so we scheduled this 
hearing some two weeks ago and it was announced. So there has 
been time enough. This was the one hearing that we were going 
to take up whatever was needed to be brought up about changes 
in the Hatch Act, reform in the Hatch Act. We even discussed this 
the other day on the floor in regard to the EPA bill which is on 
the floor because we are having a hearing this morning and we put 
off the EPA until 11:30 this morning over on the floor so we could 
all be at this hearing this morning. 



23 

So this hasn't come as any surprise, £ind now this morning I am 
given a letter here that requests under Senate rule so-and-so and 
so-and-so, which I presume is all legitimate, and so on — this is 
dated April 27th. It says, "Dear Mr. Chairman, pursuant to rule 
5(i) of the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs and the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, we the undersigned Senators of the 
majority and the minority request to call witnesses at one addi- 
tional day of hearings to testify on legislation pertaining to the 
Hatch Act," and it is signed by Senators Roth, Cochran and Cohen. 

We will have to talk this over. As I said, I wasn't planning to 
air all this this morning. I wanted to talk it over privately, but you 
have brought it up as a request for additional days of hearings and 
I just wanted to go through the background of this to show that 
I have bent backwards at every step of the way. 

With what we have seen on the floor the last few weeks, I don't 
know whether this slowing things down by amendment on the floor 
and now slowing things down by reference to Senate rules and ad- 
ditional days of hearings when we have known ever since January 
that we were bringing this up — we set the hearings back at your 
request. I acceded to that. I thought you were right in that and I 
said so, but I just don't see that the additional days of hearings are 
necessary, but we can talk about this privately. I am sorry it came 
up this morning, but we can talk about this privately and see what 
we can work out. 

But if this is just a way of delaying things, I will say that we 
have the votes in Committee to pass this, I believe. We have some 
42 cosponsors on this legislation on the floor, including some Re- 
publicans on it. So I don't think there is any doubt that this is 
going to be brought up on the floor. I also don't know whether 
there is any thought that there is any new information to be 
brought before the Committee that has not been brought up in pre- 
vious testimony that has been ad nauseam, I would say, over and 
over and over. 

We argued this on the floor. We have argued it off the floor. We 
argued it in Committee, we debated it in Committee over and over 
again the last few years. As the Senator will be the first to agree, 
I am sure, I have not tried to ramrod things through over the objec- 
tion of the minority. I have never done that and won't do it now, 
but I just really question whether this is just delay for delay's sake 
or whether there is truly new information that the Senator wants 
to bring out. 

For instance, if we have these witnesses, are they here this 
morning? I am glad to call them this morning. Do we have wit- 
nesses in the audience this morning that want to testify? 

[No response.] 

Chairman Glenn. I see no hands. Your witnesses are not here. 
This is a hearing at which we knew everything was going to come 
up, and so I think this delay tactic, as it obviously is — I may accede 
to it just in the interests of comity and making sure that everybody 
is heard so we can't have any questions about this. I may go along 
with your request and have the additional day of hearings, but I 
think this is just delay for delay's sake and if the Senator has had 
any areas he wishes to explore, I wish we would explore them this 
morning and get on with a vote. 



24 

Senator Roth. Well, as you said, we are not going to resolve this 
here, but let me just make a few comments, Mr. Chairman. First 
of all, the minority does have the right to hold a day of hearings 
both under our Committee rules as well as under the Senate rules. 
There is nothing saying that we have to persuade the other side, 
but it is just part of what seems to me an equitable and fair ap- 
proach. 

Let me say one day of hearings, I agree with you, is in no way 
going to prevent this legislation from being acted on in the Com- 
mittee and reported out and acted on on the Senate floor, but it 
is a very, very far-reaching piece of legislation. We think that it is 
important to let those who feel strongly have an opportunity to tes- 
tify. As you know, we have EPA elevation legislation coming up 
today and that created scheduling problems. 

But the point I want to make is that the request on the part of 
the minority, as is provided for in the rules, is not a delaying fac- 
tor. I think it is only fair. We have got a new administration, we 
have got a new Congress, so that it does not seem to me one day 
is unreasonable on our part and we do feel that creating part of 
the record of whatever happens that it is of critical importance. 

As I say, I agree with you, we are not going to resolve it here, 
and certainly we have always been able to work these things out 
in the past and I am confident we will do as well in the future. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, let me ask my distinguished colleague, 
if we scheduled a hearing later this week, could you have your wit- 
nesses available later this week? We have a mark-up scheduled for 
next week and I would like to have this brought before the mark- 
up next week. 

Senator Roth. We do have EPA this week. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, if we can work out a time later this 
week, will you have your witnesses available then and have the 
extra day of hearings? 

Senator RoTH. Well, we have to contact them, Mr. Chairman. 
That is pretty short notice, as you know. 

Chairman Glenn. I guess we will just have to talk about it pri- 
vately. 

Mr. King, do you have anything else to say? 

Mr. King. No, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Glenn. Do you have any additional questions. Senator 
Roth? 

Senator RoTH. No more questions. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you. Do staff representing other Sen- 
ators have any questions they want to ask? 

[No response.] 

Chairman Glenn. The hearing will stand in recess subject to the 
call of the Chair. Thank you. 

[Whereupon, at 10:48 a.m., the Committee was adjourned.] 



S. 185— HATCH ACT REFORM AMENDMENTS 

OF 1993 



FRroAY, APRIL 30, 1993 

U.S. Senate, 
Committee on GtOvernmental Affairs, 

Washington, DC. 

The Committee met, pursuant to notice, at 10:05 a.m., in room 
SD-342, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Hon. John Glenn, Chair- 
man of the Committee, presiding. 

Present: Senators Glenn and Roth. 

OPENING STATEMENT OF SENATOR GLENN 

Chairman Glenn. Good morning, and welcome to today's hearing 
on S. 185, the Hatch Act Reform Amendments of 1993. 

As many of you know, this hearing was requested by Senators 
Roth, Cohen, and Cochran. While we would have accommodated 
witnesses requested by the minority at Tuesday's hearing, we were 
not given that opportunity. 

I would like to note that at Tuesday's hearing. Senator Roth 
brought up a 1987 Senior Executives Association, or SEA, survey 
concerning Hatch Act reform which he said demonstrated opposi- 
tion by the Senior Executives to Hatch Act reform. 

I have an April 28th, 1993 letter from the SEA, clarifying the re- 
sults of this survey and the Senior Executives Association's position 
on Hatch Act reform. The SEA sent me a similar letter in 1989 
when Senator Roth raised these same survey concerns. 

I will enter these in the record, but I would read in part from 
the letter we got just a day or so ago. They start out saying they 
understand this subject has come up, and they say they want to 
clarify the purpose of the survey that they did and its results. 

"No. 1, the survey was done in 1987, approximately 6 years ago." 

"No. 2, SEA received the lowest response rate ever to any survey 
we have done — 22 percent." 

"No. 3, the survey results were very disappointing to the Associa- 
tion because they produced no definition position from the member- 
ship." 

"No. 4, in addition to the low response rate, the responses them- 
selves were very ambivalent, with a substantial number of the 
questions not answered." 

"No. 5, only approximately half of those surveyed believe that the 
Association should oppose the Hatch Act Amendments, and the re- 
mainder did not specify one way or the other." 

(25) 



• 26 

"No. 6, the Association itself has not taken a position on Hatch 
Act changes proposed because of the ambivalence of its member- 
ship when surveyed in 1987." 

"No. 7, the turnover in Association membership is approximately 
10 percent per year. In addition, Association membership has 
grown from approximately 2,200 in 1987 to nearly 3,200 today. 
This would indicate that 60 to 90 percent of the membership in the 
Association has changed since the survey was taken." 

"No. 8, the Association concluded in our 1989 letter to you that 
the survey was not valid for the purpose of the Association taking 
a position on the proposed amendments to the Hatch Act. It has 
even less validity today, nearly 4 years later." 

"No. 9, the Association takes no position on the proposed amend- 
ments to the Hatch Act now being considered by your Committee." 

I will enter this in the record. ^ 

Chairman Glenn. Senator Roth, do you care to make an opening 
statement? 

OPENING STATEMENT OF SENATOR ROTH 

Senator RoTH. Yes, Mr. Chairman. First, I want to thank you for 
agreeing to the request for this additional day of hearings. 

The Chairman stated on Tuesday that S. 185 was "a modest re- 
form," that it strengthens the Hatch Act, and that he can't under- 
stand why anyone would oppose such a bill. 

If this legislation strengthens the law as the Chairman suggests, 
why is it that such a broad range of groups are opposed to changes 
in the Hatch Act? Public interest groups such as Common Cause 
and the National Academy of Public Administration are extremely 
concerned about the negative consequences of this bill. Groups not 
generally interested in the details of Federal employment, such as 
the National Taxpayers Union, have expressed opposition to S. 185. 
Other groups and individuals will be testifying this morning with 
regard to their concerns. 

Why is it that more than 50 newspapers, the guardians of First 
Amendment rights, have written editorials opposed to this legisla- 
tion? These are not ridiculous extremes of opinion, but the main- 
stay of the American public which is concerned about coercion of 
Government employees and the nonpartisan administration of Gov- 
ernment. 

Not only does this bill wipe out 54 years of a civil service pro- 
tected by the Hatch Act, but it would prevent future presidents 
from providing such protection by Executive order. This bill is a 
break from our Nation's entire history, extending from Thomas Jef- 
ferson to Theodore Roosevelt to Franklin Delano Roosevelt to Ger- 
ald Ford and George Bush. Why have so many presidents. Demo- 
crat and Republican, promoted a civil service removed from "elec- 
tioneering"? 

The three members of the minority on this Committee who asked 
for this hearing did so because we wanted one last opportunity for 
thoughtful consideration of this bill. The Chairman has suggested 
that this legislation has been debated ad nauseam. We did not ask 



1 See pages 99-100. 



27 

for this hearing to debate the issue, but rather to ask the pro- 
ponents on both sides of the aisle to think carefully about the im- 
pact this bill will have on the nonpartisan administration of Gov- 
ernment. In my opinion, President Clinton is the first president 
who would sign S. 185. Proponents should think carefully about the 
bill they want to present to him. 

This request for a hearing will not delay this bill. The Committee 
markup was scheduled for next Tuesday; it is my understand that 
it has been rescheduled for May 11th, due to our obligation to be 
on the Senate floor Tuesday morning to further consider the EPA 
elevation bill. 

We understand that we are in the minority, but we are trying 
to appeal to the majority on this issue, on both sides of the aisle, 
to stop and think carefully about what they are doing. We agreed 
to this hearing on Friday so the majority could keep its markup as 
scheduled. 

The individuals appearing today have thought carefully about 
the impact this legislation will have. We will hear from those who 
are advocating that certain sensitive employees be exempt from the 
bill, much in the same way that the 1976 bill presented to Presi- 
dent Ford contained an exclusion for sensitive employees at the De- 
partment of Justice, the CIA, and the Internal Revenue Service. 
Should we exempt certain agencies with sensitive positions? 

Should we create a protective band around career Senior Execu- 
tive Service employees, supervisors, and managers who work di- 
rectly for political appointees? These are the employees who work 
most closely with the political appointees and will be most subject 
to political pressure. 

Equally important, are we really prepared to overturn more than 
100 years of precedent and allow Federal employees to solicit 
money contributions? Both the House and Senate bills would, in 
different degrees, allow employees to solicit contributions. 

Are we really prepared to allow Federal employees to become 
campaign managers and party leaders? If so, we must be prepared 
to deal with the abuse which is sure to follow, along with the 
public's believe that politics has once again crept into the non- 
partisan administration of Government. 

I would like to thank the individuals who agreed to appear before 
the Committee today. They have agreed to do so on short notice. 
Some have encountered pressures not to testify. Others have been 
pressured by various groups not to appear at all. That's a shame. 
What is there to fear? 

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, I would ask one question. You said they 
were pressured not to testify. By whom? 

Senator Roth. Well, I think there have been two things. For one, 
a number of organizations, it has been indicated, had to supply cer- 
tain information in respect to their use of mailing and other non- 
profit rights. Second, it is my understanding that one organization 
had pressure from other organizations that they want to work to- 
gether in the future and that it would be wise not to testify 

Chairman Glenn. Well, let me clarify this before we go on. Has 
there been any pressure whatsoever from Committee stafi" or from 
me, or from any member on the Democratic side? 



28 

Senator Roth. Well, I do understand that a number of witnesses 
have been told that there would be a requirement to supply infor- 
mation with respect to nonprofit mail status, how much revenue 
foregone, topics of the mailings, and mailings concerning Hatch 
Act. Those, so far as I know, were unusual requests that I am not 
acquainted with having been made before. 

Chairman Glenn. I understand we may have some questions for 
the record on this from one of our members, but I think that is 
quite routine; I think we do that all the time. That has been done 
on both sides of the aisle, and there isn't any problem with that 
as far as I know. 

Senator RoTH. Well 

Chairman Glenn. Obviously, we could get into a debate here, 
and we are almost on the verge of that right now, and I think since 
we agreed to have the hearing today, I would only say that this 
issue has been up for a long time. I acceded to the request of the 
minority when they wanted another day of hearings. They didn't 
have to go to all the formality of a letter, and quoting arcane Sen- 
ate rules to get that. We always — I don't know that I've ever 
turned down a request for a hearing of either side here. We want 
to get both sides of all these issues. And to bring it up at the last 
minute, I thought was a bit much, and I expressed myself on that 
the other day at the hearing, and I don't need to go through that 
whole record again. 

So I think we should get on with the hearing this morning. 

Our first witness this morning is David Rosenbloom, with the 
National Academy of Public Administration. David, if you'll come 
forward and give your statement, we'd appreciate it. 

TESTIMONY OF DAVID ROSENBLOOM,i NATIONAL ACADEMY 
OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION, ACCOMPANIED BY ROGER 
SPERRY, DIRECTOR OF MANAGEMENT STUDIES, NAPA, AND 
MURRAY COMAROW, FELLOW, NAPA 

Mr. Rosenbloom. Thank you. I am David Rosenbloom. I hold the 
title of Distinguished Professor of Public Administration at Amer- 
ican University. I am also editor-in-chief of the Public Administra- 
tion Review, which is the journal of the American Society for Public 
Administration. 

I have written extensively on the Hatch Act and related issues. 
Some of this work was relied upon as the Supreme Court as au- 
thoritative history in its decision in Elrod v. Burns in 1976. 

With me are Roger Sperry, who is Director of Management Stud- 
ies at the National Academy of Public Administration, and my col- 
league Murray Comarow, who is the member of the public service 
panel of the National Academy of Public Administration. 

With your permission, I would like to read our statement. 

Chairman Glenn. Fine. 

Mr. Rosenbloom. Mr. Chairman, Senator Roth, I am pleased to 
respond to your invitation to present the National Academy of Pub- 
lic Administration's views on proposed changes to the Hatch Act. 
My testimony today represents the view of our Panel on the Public 
Service and is similar to the statement provide to this Committee 



' The prepared statement of Mr. Rosenbloom appears on page 100. 



29 

in 1988 by the late Joseph L. Fisher, then chairman of the Acad- 
emes board of trustees, on H.R. 3400, the forerunner of the legisla- 
tion currently under consideration. 

The purpose of S. 185 is to "restore to Federal civili£tn employees 
their right to participate voluntarily, as private citizens, in the po- 
litical process of the Nation, and to protect such employees from 
improper solicitations." 

Mr. Chairman, we fully understand the very positive motivations 
of those who seek to broaden Federal employees' opportunities to 
participate in our Nation's cherished political processes of Govern- 
ment. 

Revisions to the Hatch Act contained in S. 185 would permit Fed- 
eral employees to engage in a broader range of partisEui political 
activities when they are not on duty. Existing prohibitions would 
continue, and penalties would be toughened for on-the-job partisan 
political activities, including the use of official influence or informa- 
tion for partisan purposes. 

The Academy's Panel on the Public Service has considered this 
proposal carefully on numerous occasions and again reviewed this 
issue at a recent meeting. We continue to believe that the adverse 
consequences of permitting broader Federal employee participation 
in partisan campaigns and elections far outweigh the potential ben- 
efits. 

Political activity by Federgd employees has been a matter of con- 
cern since the early days of the Republic. However, it was Presi- 
dent Theodore Roosevelt who laid down prohibitions that were 
later incorporated in the Hatch Act. His Executive Order 642, 
dated June 3, 1907, not only prohibited certain Federal employees 
from using their official authority or influence to interfere with or 
affect the results of elections, but it also prohibited those in the 
competitive civil service from taking an active part in the manage- 
ment of political campaigns. 

The Hatch Act, passed in 1939, extended these prohibitions to all 
Federal employees, including those in the excepted service. 

From time to time, these legislative limits on participation of 
Federal employees in political processes have been called an in- 
fringement on the constitutional freedoms of speech and assembly. 
That question was settled when the Supreme Court held in 1973 
that it did not violate the constitutional rights of Federal employ- 
ees to prohibit them from enga^ng in plainly identifiable acts of 
political management and political campaigning. However, this 
does not preclude changing the law. 

On the fundamental issue of permitting Federal employees to en- 
gage, while off duty, in the full range of partisan political activity, 
any change must recognize the need to balguice Federal employees' 
rights to participate in the political life of the Nation and the 
public's right to a competent, impartial, nonpartisan administration 
of the law. In this delicate balance, the reality and the perception 
are both vital considerations. The appearance of nonpartisanship in 
the execution of law is essential to maintaining public confidence 
in the administrative institutions of Government. We believe the 
existing system provides a reasonable balance. 

Whatever partisan political activity is permitted off duty would 
for many become the expected behavior. Those in the civil service 



67-400 0-94-2 



30 

would soon come to believe that better assignments, promotions 
and bonuses depend in part on partisan political activity. Equally 
destructive of morale and motivation would be a growing concern 
that not being promoted or given a preferred assignment was due 
to engaging in political activity for the unsuccessful party or can- 
didate, or for not participating at all. This is no way to attract and 
retain a high-quality civil service. 

We believe that Federgd employees' involvement in partisan polit- 
ical activities would erode citizen confidence in the impartial ad- 
ministration of laws. Many citizens would have a growing uneasi- 
ness about the objectivity of Federal employees who oppose them 
in partisan political campaigns and who then are involved in inves- 
tigations or decisions that might affect them adversely. This could 
occur in numerous situations dealing with taxes, eligibility for indi- 
vidual and corporate benefits, compliance with regulatory require- 
ments, and award of Government contracts. Public trust in the ad- 
ministrative processes of Government could be dangerously under- 
mined. 

Finally, there is the issue of transitions in administration from 
one political party to the other. Civil service employees' participa- 
tion in partisan political activities would greatly increase the 
doubts of incoming administrations about the responsiveness of ca- 
reer civil servants who opposed them during campEiigns. Even 
under the existing law, it has been hard for many presidential ap- 
pointees to shake such doubts, even though they were almost al- 
ways unjustified. Partisan political activity by career civil servants 
would create insurmountable barriers of suspicion in many politi- 
cal-career relationships. 

Some argue for less drastic changes in the Hatch Act, such as 
permitting Federal employees off duty to engage in the full range 
of partisan political activity only in connection with partisan elec- 
tions for local Government offices. Others argue for changes in the 
Act that would permit a full range of off-the-job partisan political 
activity by those Federal employees whose duties do not include 
substantive responsibilities in any procurement, leasing, contract- 
ing, benefit, and employment activities. 

Aside from the extraordinary difficulty, if not impossibility, of 
making and enforcing these distinctions, it is unrealistic to expect 
such distinctions to permeate the public consciousness. Instead, the 
public may come to believe that political partisanship diminishes 
impartiality in the execution of laws. 

The adverse consequences of permitting civil service employees to 
go beyond the scope of present practices are simply so great as to 
make them unacceptable. Similarly, a situation which continues to 
discourage a large number of our citizens from lawful exercise of 
political rights is also unacceptable. Questions about interpreta- 
tions of the Hatch Act need to be answered promptly and clearly 
so that Federal employees desiring to participate more fully in the 
political process can feel comfortable about doing so to the maxi- 
mum extent now permitted. 

Nonetheless, it is the sense of our panel that if the Congress does 
seek to allow broader participation for most Federal employees, cer- 
tain categories of employees must remain under the current restric- 
tions. These categories are career senior executive servants and 



31 

GM-13 through 15 employees. These employees have high-level ex- 
ecutive and managerial responsibilities to the American public. 
Broader pari;isan political activity on their pari; would erode the 
public's confidence in their neutrality and objective dedication to 
serving the public interest. We believe it would also put pressure, 
however subtly, on their subordinates to engage in similar partisan 
activity. 

The SES and GM categories are sdready well-established in per- 
sonnel law and regulation and are treated differently from other 
employees with regard to classification and pay. We do not believe 
that excluding SES and GM employees from broader partisan polit- 
ical participation would create definitional or administrative dif- 
ficulties. We do believe that it would be for the good of the Nation. 

Without exception, we oppose modifications of the Hatch Act. 

Mr. Chairman, this concludes my prepared statement. We would 
be pleased to respond to any questions you may have. Also, Profes- 
sor Comarow has some prepared remarks. 

Chairman GLENN. Fine. Go ahead. 

Mr. Comarow. Mr. Chgdrman and Senator Roth, my name is 
Murray Comarow. I have had the pleasure of testifying before your 
other Committee, Senator, on reform of the 0MB. I have had 30 
years of Federal service and roughly 20 years of teaching and prac- 
ticing private law. 

I have been a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Adminis- 
tration for almost 20 years, and during all of that time, the Acad- 
emy has taken positions which by and large protect and enhance 
the status of the career civil service in this country. This is simply 
another such step. 

The Academy believes in the importance of a politically neutral 
and competent civil service, and believes that this step would un- 
dermine that political neutrality. 

The question should not be approached, in my opinion, as simply 
the exercise of a right. Individual rights are extremely important. 
I am sort of a First Amendment freak, and yet I would have to de- 
fend the opposing right, if that's the correct word, of the Govern- 
ment to impose restrictions on free speech upon certain employees, 
especially those in the military and in the intelligence agencies. 

Most Americans have a right to strike. I believe that the present 
legislative policy which prohibits Government employees from 
striking is a correct position and a reasonable balance between the 
individual rights of Americans and the general rights and needs of 
the Government. 

The question naturally arises — where is the pressure for this bill 
coming from? It clearly is not coming from Government employees. 
One poll that I examined indicated that only about three out of 10 
Government employees support this kind of bill. The poll which 
Senator Roth mentioned earlier indicates that Government people 
are quite ambivalent about the bill. 

The pressure is coming from organized labor, the same group 
that, if I were the president of a Government union, this is pre- 
cisely what I would do, because I know that it would enhance my 
already considerable influence. 



32 

Mr. Chairman, in a complex society, a competent and politically 
neutral career service is not a sort of added attraction; it is an ab- 
solutely essential concomitant of a democracy. This bill would open 
the door not only to political pressure but, as Professor Rosenbloom 
has at least intimated, there are a certain number of people in any 
organization who actively seek ways to please their political superi- 
ors, and I believe that this will in time undermine public con- 
fidence in an extremely serious way and to the detriment of our 
democratic system. 

Thank you. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you. Further statements? 

Mr. Sperry. No, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. Good. I have a couple questions before I turn 
this over to Senator Roth. 

It has been argued that the current Hatch Act precludes career 
civil servants from labelling themselves as Republican or Demo- 
cratic civil servants; right? Is that correct? 

Mr. Rosenbloom. Yes. 

Mr. Sperry. Yes. 

Chairman Glenn. Currently, civil servants can label themselves, 
though. A civil servant can wear a political campaign button on the 
job. A Federal employee can wear a button that states he is a Re- 
publican, a Democrat, who he supports, whatever. Under this bill, 
S. 185, a Federal employee could no longer wear such a button. 

Under current law, the letter carriers can attend political rallies 
in uniform. Under S. 185, this would be prohibited. 

I just use those as examples, because under the bill, what I have 
stated repeatedly at hearing after hearing over the past several 
years is true, and that is we tighten up on political activities on 
the job. We prohibit everything; in fact, put in a very stiff pen- 
alty — I think it is $5,000 and 3 years in jail as a penalty— which 
was not in previous law, for any violation of people on the job. You 
couldn't even wear a campaign button. 

But to balance that, we loosen up a little bit off the job, for such 
things as you could carry a poster at a political rally; if you don't 
have $1,000 to give to a candidate you want to support, you can 
go stuff envelopes, which is an in-kind contribution of time. 

I just find it very difficult to find anything really wrong with 
that. What we are saying in effect is that it is just as fair for people 
to have some political support they can give with their own hands 
by stuffing envelopes as it is for the people who can afford to give 
$1,000 to a candidate of their choice. 

I have never dealt with any piece of legislation, I don't think, 
where such great and horrendous results were supposed to come 
from comparatively small bits of correction in what we think is just 
fairness in the law. And it is fairness. And I say this having come 
as a convert to this. When I first came to the Congress, I would 
not have voted for a change in the Hatch Act for anything. But 
then I got into it when I got onto this Committee, and found out 
what the Hatch Act had really been doing, and the — I forget 
whether it was 1,500 or 3,000— different rules and regulations at 
that time that had been put out under Hatch Act to where people 
didn't have any idea at all about what they could do and couldn't 
do. 



33 

So we thought, well, it makes sense to try to correct some of that 
and let people know — these are Americans; we've got a couple mil- 
lion Americans out there in the civil service, and they are Ameri- 
cans like everybody else — can't we make some sense out of this? 

So under the bill, just as an example, Federal employees could 
carry posters at a political rally; they could distribute campaign 
material or stuff envelopes — this is all off the job — they could give 
in-kind contributions of their own efforts as opposed to giving 
$1,000. They could participate off duty in voter registration drives 
or phone banks. This is all provided they did not wear any uniform 
or insignia that would identify them as a Federal employee or post- 
al employee. And under the bill, they still could not run for par- 
tisan elective office. They still could not solicit campaign contribu- 
tions from the general public or subordinate employees. 

All political activity on the job would be prohibited completely; 
ofif-the-job, though, we loosen it up to that extent. So I just think 
this is a matter of fairness, and as I say, I came as a convert to 
this. 

We mentioned the sensitive employees, too, under the 1976 Act, 
I believe. I would note that the 1976 Act exempted sensitive em- 
ployees, and if that is being held up as an example of a good bill — 
I don't know whether you meant that or not — but if that is being 
held up as an example of a good bill, I would say that the 1976 
bill allowed Federal employees to run for partisan political office. 
This bill does not. It allowed Federal employees to raise money for 
political campaigns from the general public — Federal employees 
going out and soliciting the general public for campaign funds in 
that 1976 Act. S. 185 prohibits that, absolutely. 

Those are more statements, I guess, than questions. 

Senator RoTH. 

Senator ROTH. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

One of my concerns at the current time is the lack of confidence 
in government. Unfortunately, many people, the public in general, 
look upon Grovernment as a cause of problems rather than a solver. 
What worries me about this proposal at this time is that it seems 
to me we are moving in a direction that will only erode confidence 
further. If the public sees or perceives the FederEil employees as 
being partisan in administering the laws, they will have even less 
confidence. 

Do you think this timing is a serious consideration and that this 
is a serious problem from the standpoint of competence in Govern- 
ment? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Yes, I do, and if I can speak for myself— I 
can't really speak for the whole panel, but I believe that the Panel 
on the Public Service does as well — I think that aside from the per- 
ception of partisanship, there is a problem of potential coercion. 
And once, of course, people are allowed to engage in activities, I be- 
lieve that there will be some subtle pressures for them to do so, 
and over the years it may become the norm for them to do so. 

Now, I know the bill does contain stiff penalties against coercion, 
but we have lots of regulations in Federal personnel that prohibit 
practices which nevertheless occur. Back in 1988, for example, the 
Merit Systems Protection Board did a survey with regard to sexual 
harassment and found that even though it is prohibited, of course. 



34 

42 percent of all female Federal employees, according to that sur- 
vey, felt that at one time or another, they had been sexually har- 
assed. We know we have regulations against discrimination — we 
have Equal Employment Opportunity regulations — and yet in 1987, 
according to the National Law Journal study of that year, there 
were some 17,000 cases or complaints of discrimination, prohibited 
discrimination, only 91 of which resulted in clear findings of dis- 
crimination that were accepted by agencies. 

We know we have regulations against unfair labor practices, but 
yet we have some 3,000 unfair labor practice charges filed each 
year with the Federal Labor Relations authority. 

So my feeling is that even though the bill contains some strict 
prohibitions on coercion, that it will be hard to implement those 
prohibitions and that, as time goes on, partisan political activity by 
Federal employees, including upper-level Federal employees, is 
likely to become common and probably the norm, in which case I 
think the public will perceive that the Federal service is not politi- 
cally neutral, but that it is partisan, or at least it is heavily influ- 
enced by partisanship. 

Senator RoTH. Is this so-called division between what you can do 
on the job and off the job that significant, or will that be such a 
blurred line that it will not have much effectiveness? In other 
words, if pressure is put on you off the job, is that not going to 
have any effect or impact when you are on the job? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. I think that the pressure to do things off" the 
job, if there is pressure, and an effort to resist that pressure would 
in fact probably have something to do with treatment on the job. 

You may all remember that back in the mid-1960's. Senator 
Ervin introduced the Bill of Rights for Federal Employees, which 
was aimed at prohibiting coercion. At that time, there was coercion 
of Federal employees to engage in all kinds of projects, including 
beautification projects, buying light bulbs for playgrounds, and ac- 
tivities like that, which came out during the hearings on his Bill 
of Rights for Federal Employees. What I'm getting at is his feeling, 
then, was that parts of the Federal service were rife with this kind 
of pressure, and it is difficult for employees to resist; inevitably, re- 
sistance does have an impact on how they perceive their treatment 
on the job, if not the actual treatment itself. 

Senator ROTH. Yes, sir? 

Mr. COMAROW. If I may comment. Senator Roth, there certainly 
is the danger of pressure. But I see this more as the creation of 
an incentive system for Federal employees to behave in certain 
ways. People tend by and large to respond to incentives, and if they 
perceive incentives to become politically active in the interests of 
their superiors, a certain number of people will do so without any 
pressure from above at all. 

Senator Roth. Well, it seems to me it puts the Federal employee 
in a very, very difficult position because, as you say, whether it is 
incentives or pressures or whatever, there is the desire to do that 
which will help you advance your career. 

Mr. CoMAROW. Exactly. 

Senator Roth. And I think the important thing to keep in mind 
is that we aren't just talking about the current administration; we 



35 

are talking about future administrations as well. So this is not di- 
rected at the Clinton administration or the Democrats, or at Re- 
publicans. The fact is when you remove it, there are going to be 
those who will one way or another make it very clear if you want 
to get ahead, you had better be cooperative in what are partisgin 
matters. 

The problem with the poor Federal employee, if he or she re- 
sponds to that, then your next administration comes along of the 
opposite party, and the new politicals are going to have no con- 
fidence. So you are undermining the confidence in the system, and 
it just seems to me the current system has worked relatively well. 
Yes, there have been some problems. I mean, they constantly bring 
up that there are 3,000 rulings; we all know that isn't correct, and 
something should be done to spell out with greater clarity as to 
what can and cannot be done. But essentially, down through the 
years, since the 1940's when this legislation, the Hatch Act, was 
enacted, it has worked, I think, remarkably well. I think the pub- 
lic — do you agree — has a perception today that as a general rule, 
the laws are enforced in a nonpartisan way? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. I would agree with that, yes. 

Senator Roth. You mentioned that if the Hatch Act goes 
through, certain people should be exempted. Would S. 185 be im- 
proved by an amendment which provides an exclusion for super- 
visors, managers, and career Senior Executive Service employees? 
That's the group that will probably have the most pressure from 
the political appointments. Should there be some kind of band of 
neutrality to try to prevent any administration from imposing its 
will on the work establishment? 

Mr. RoSENBLOOM. Yes, I believe very strongly that there should 
be such a ban, some kind of continuation of the present restric- 
tions, although they might be clarified. It does seem that since this 
has been an issue since the days of Thomas Jefferson, it would 
make sense not to do away with the Hatch Act in its entirety, but 
if we are going to modify it substantially, why not start at the lev- 
els below supervisor and see how it works out; and then if it works 
out so that the kinds of fears or concerns we have don't material- 
ize, at some other time, the restrictions on the political activity of 
people above, as in the SES or the GM or supervisors, could be lift- 
ed. 

Senator RoTH. In 1976, the Hatch Act legislation presented to 
Ford provided an exclusion for sensitive people, employees of the 
Department of Justice, Internal Revenue Service, Central Intel- 
ligence Agency. S. 185 only provides an exclusion for the Federal 
Election Commission. 

Would S. 185 be improved if there were an amendment excluding 
these sensitive employees? 

Mr. RoSENBLOOM. I think it would be improved insofar as it was 
relatively easy to identify the categories of sensitive employees, and 
there was a relatively bright line between them and other employ- 
ees. 

Senator ROTH. The Senate and House bills differ in that under 
the Senate bill. Federal employees would be barred from running 
for any partisan office and from soliciting money contributions from 



36 

the general public. That is not the case with the House bill. Do 
these differences factor into your views of S. 185? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Yes. I think it is critical that whatever 
changes are made, they not include allowing Federal employees to 
solicit funds from the general public. I think the potential for the 
public to construe the Federal service as partisan and not objective 
in the administration of the laws would be considerable if Federal 
employees were able to off-the-job solicit funds from the general 
public. 

Senator ROTH. Gentlemen, I greatly appreciate your being here 
today and giving us the advantage of your expertise. It has been 
very helpful. 

Mr. Chairman, those are all the questions I have at this time. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you. Senator Roth. 

I mentioned the 3,000 or so rules and regulations, many of which 
were conflicting so that Federal employees didn't know where they 
were going. It is absolutely correct, as Senator Roth says, that 
those have been cut down now, and they have been simplified. I 
forget how many hundred we are down to now, but it's quite a few 
still, as I recall. So I stand corrected on that. I didn't mean to 
imply that there are all these 3,000, and things are still out there. 
As a result of our previous hearings, they have gone through and 
simplified some of these things. But there is nothing in the law 
now that says we can't drift back up as people bring things up and 
try to get clarifications. 

Senator RoTH. Would the Chairman yield for a comment? 

Chairman GLENN. Surely. 

Senator ROTH. I'll be happy to support legislation that the num- 
ber of such rules be limited to the current 29 and cannot be added 
thereto. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, no, I would not agree with that, and I 
would fight that one on the floor, because I tlunk if there are needs 
that are shown in the system to make it better and to make it 
more fair, I wouldn't want to limit it by some arbitrary rule on the 
Senate floor that just says we can't have above a certain number 
of rules. That would be silly, and I think probably if we presented 
it that way on the floor, you'd be hard-pressed to vote for your own 
amendment. 

Let me just ask a couple of additional questions, and I know we 
have other witnesses waiting. I presume you gentlemen will all 
agree that we should not let Federal employees, civil service peo- 
ple, run for partisan elective office. 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Agreed. 

Mr. Sperry. Yes. 

Mr. COMAROW. Yes. 

Chairman GLENN. And I presume that you would agree that they 
would not be permitted to solicit campaign contributions from the 
general public or from subordinate employees as part of this bill. 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Yes. 

Mr. Sperry. Yes. 

Mr. CoMAROW. Yes. 

Chairman Glenn. I would ask you this. What is wrong with let- 
ting people who already have a right to make a contribution of up 
to $1,000 to a Federal candidate, but they don't have $1,000— most 



37 

civil service employees are not wealthy people, as you know from 
experience that some of you might have had — and I see a couple 
of heads in the audience nodding also on that one — so what is 
wrong with letting people who don't have up to $1,000 or any part 
thereof to contribute and to be able to say, "In my off time, I'll go 
down and stuff envelopes"? What's wrong with that? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM, There are two potential problems with that. 
One is, of course, that if it is totally voluntary, then there is no in- 
fringement on their rights to participate. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, that's assumed going in, now. 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. OK. 

Chairman Glenn. And with stiff penalties if that is violated. 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM, Right. Assuming that's enforceable in the en- 
vironment of the Federal service, then it would in fact be vol- 
untary. I think some of the other systems in the personnel system 
and the appeals system indicate that it is hard to implement some 
of these kinds of restrictions. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, let me take it back, then, a moment. Do 
you think Federal employees should be prohibited from contribut- 
ing to a campaign? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. No. Voluntarily 

ChairmsQi Glenn. Well, their actions with their hands are vol- 
untary. How do you know that they weren't coerced into that 
$1,000 check? I am asking you, do you advocate cutting out the 
ability of civil service employees to contribute voluntarily to a cam- 
paign? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. No, I do not. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, then, why would you disagree with them 
voluntarily, on the same basis, being able to stuff envelopes? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. I don't disagree if it is voluntary. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, that's the basis of the whole bill, Mr. 
Rosenbloom. You brought up all this sexual harassment stuff a 
minute ago under the Merit Systems Protection Board, and I didn't 
understand what the connection was. If you think I'm putting out 
a Hatch Act change that is supposed to advocate sexual harass- 
ment or something, that just isn't there. 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. No. I'm sorry if the point was not clear, but 
the point is that it is very hard to enforce these kinds of regula- 
tions in the environment of the Federal service. 

Chairman Glenn. If you were to assume, Mr. Rosenbloom, that 
every law is going to be administered perfectly, and there will 
never be a violation, so we should never pass another law, then we 
can never pass another law on Capitol Hill. I am the first to agree 
that a lot of these things like Merit Systems Protection Board prob- 
lems should be dealt with more forthrightly. But I don't think you 
would say that because it has not been used properly that you ad- 
vocate doing away with the Merit Systems Protection Board be- 
cause on occasion it hasn't worked. 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Right, not at all. 

Chairman Glenn. Or do you — do you advocate doing away with 
it? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. No, I do not. 

Chairman GLENN. OK, good. We are in agreement on that. 



38 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. We are in agreement on that, and I don't 
think I am saying if the law is not enforced in one particular case 
that we should do away with the law; that's not the point. I think 
the point is that the restrictions against coercion have to be such 
that they can be enforced easily. Experience with the EEO with un- 
fair labor practices in the Federal service to me suggests that it is 
hard to enforce these kinds of restrictions. 

Chairman GLENN. Why do you say that we can go ahead with 
campaign contributions, then, because those have violations, too — 
but you say there are going to be more violations if people are al- 
lowed to go stuff envelopes. That doesn't make any sense, does it? 

Mr. RoSENBLOOM. Well, correct me if I am wrong, but the cam- 
paign contributions are already allowed, are they not? 

Chairman Glenn. Sure. But why should you me able to give in- 
kind contributions if a person doesn't have money to give? 

Mr. RoSENBLOOM. Well, again, when you put it like that, of 
course, it is essentially a quid pro quo, one as a substitute for the 
other, and I have no objection to the voluntary stuffing of enve- 
lopes. My concern is whether it is voluntary or not, and that's 
where we are hung up here. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, don't you have the same concern about 
whether the cash contribution or the check that's being written is 
also voluntary? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Yes, I do, but since that is already in the law, 
and we are unaware of a whole lot of abuse, there is nothing much 
to say about that. 

On the other end of it, though, is the perception of neutrsdity. 
And the act of giving a csmipaign check is usually not public; stuff- 
ing envelopes, of course, could be private 

Chairman Glenn. That's exactly the point, exactly the point. 
What you are saying to me is — and you may take exception to 
this — but what I understand you are saying is that it is OK if there 
is subtle pressure to give some cash here that you can't track down 
because a person doesn't have to tell everybody what he just did; 
it doesn't come out, and as long as they don't contribute too much, 
probably nobody will ever pick it up on an FEC report. But if you 
have a little more pressure, and a person is willing to go public and 
say, 'Tes, I'm going down there, and I'm going to stuff some enve- 
lopes off-duty," that's OK — you are sajdng that they have to be 
public about one but not about the other. 

Would you propose, then, making a law that says if any civil 
servant writes a check of £uiy size to a political campaign, they 
have to announce it right then, publicly, to their fellow workers, 
that they are writing that check. Would you require that? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. No. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, then, I'm just trying to make a level 
playing field between campaign cash and in-kind contributions. It 
seems to me you have to treat them both the same way if you are 
going to be fair. 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Well, you can treat them both the same way, 
again, as long as they are both voluntary. The fear is that the one 
will not be voluntary, that it is more of a public act than the other 
the way it exists now. 



39 

Chairman Glenn. Why do you feel that one is hkely to be less 
likely to come from coercion than the other — because actually, cash, 
the way it is now, it seems to me is more likely to result from coer- 
cion than having to go public and go down and say, "I'm stuffing 
envelopes down there with some other people," because you can 
keep a cash contribution or a check quiet. You can keep that quiet; 
you don't have to say anything to your coworkers. But it can come 
much more easily as a result of a superior's pressure on you than 
if you are willing to step out and go down and say, "I'm going to 
work at a campaign headquarters a little bit in my off-duty hours." 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Well, what is the experience with the cash 
contributions? Do we have evidence of coercion and subtle pres- 
sures, or not? 

Chairman Glenn. I don't know of any. You are the one who is 
talking about the coercion, not me. What do you think? Do you 
think there is coercion or not? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Well, I think apparently it works pretty well, 
because we don't hear about a lot of cases of that. 

Chairman Glenn. Then why wouldn't it work with in-kind con- 
tributions? 

Mr. ROSENBLOOM. Well, as you say. Federal employees may be 
in a position to be more readily able to donate labor than cash, and 
it is something that they are all able to do is go stuff envelopes, 
as opposed to all of them being able to give large cash contribu- 
tions; so maybe there would be more pressure on them. 

Chairman GLENN. I think we've about exhausted this subject for 
the moment, unless Senator Roth has anything further. 

Senator ROTH. Just let me make one comment. It seems to me 
a significant difference is the question of private expression and 
public expression. One of the purposes of the Hatch Act is to en- 
sure that our laws are administered in a nonpartisan way and that 
they be perceived as being administered in a nonpartisan way. 

The difficulty, if you have a number of people going down with 
in-kind contributions, whether it is stuffing envelopes or making 
speeches or whatever, then the nonpartisanship is lost. I think that 
is one of the key goals of the Hatch Act is for the public to perceive 
our laws to be administered in a nonpartisan way. 

Well, thank you, gentlemen, very much. 

Chairman Glenn. Just one further comment. What you are tell- 
ing me is that it's all right if you do it in the closet, and not right 
if you do it out of the closet; is that right? You can't go public with 
this, or you are bad. 

Mr. Sperry. Mr. Chairman, I think in fairness to David, you are 
proposing a change in the law. The Academy panel considered the 
proposed change in its prior incarnation and recently here. It has 
not considered the efficacy of whether or not there ought to be a 
change in the campaign contribution provision. We fully under- 
stand your point here. It is difficult for us to be able to compare 
one to the other, and I think there is a further burden when one 
wants to change the law as opposed to whether we ought to keep 
the law as it is. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, the whole objective of this bill, from be- 
ginning to end, is to make it fair, to make an even playing field, 



40 

and to let people have what rights they can have without endan- 
gering Government — and if it is fair to do it one way, but you tell 
a person they can contribute a $1,000 check, but someone down the 
street who has a sick kid or something else that they must spend 
all their money on, and doesn't have $1,000, but they still want to 
be as involved as the other person — and you are sa3dng that that 
is illegal, and we can't correct it because one is in law, and one 
isn't. That is what we are trying to correct here and make it fair. 

Mr, Sperry. We fully understand your concerns and what you 
are trying to do. Our concern is what the ultimate effect would be 
in terms of the public's perception of the neutrality of the Federal 
service. 

Chairman GLENN. Public perception right now is that this whole 
thing is a sham, it is ridiculous, and we ought to correct it — and 
I came as a convert to that. I could have sat there where you are 
when I first got here 18 years ago and said exactly the same thing, 
that we shouldn't change one iota, not one period or paragraph, in 
the Hatch Act. But when I looked at it, and found out about the 
abuses of it and how ridiculous it was, then I became a convert, 
and I have been one ever since. 

So I am not for unbalancing this. I want to have civil service pro- 
tection, I truly do, but I want it to be fair. That's the only thing 
this does, and all these dire portents that are drawn up with re- 
gard to this bill are just ridiculous. 

Senator ROTH. I just want to make one point very clear. Cer- 
tainly, in my contacts with the public and my mail, I have seen no 
great drive on the part of the general public supporting a change 
in the Hatch Act. There are certain interested groups in Govern- 
ment who have the right to pursue it and are seeking it. But as 
far as there being an outburst of indignation and dissatisfaction 
with the Hatch Act, that is not true either in respect to the general 
public or, as far as I am concerned, with the Federal employees as 
a whole. There are exceptions who, of course, feel otherwise. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, we could go on giving examples all day 
here and asking for your response, but I thank you, gentlemen. We 
may have some additional follow-up questions for you. Let me ask 
one other question. Has NAPA advocated leaving the Hatch Act the 
way it is? Have you done mailings on this, and do you take a posi- 
tion on this and try to advocate your position? 

Mr. Sperry. No, sir, absolutely not. Given the nonpartisan status 
of the Academy, we are precluded from doing that. We respond to 
your invitations to testify on issues when we are asked to do so, 
and we have not in any way tried to broadcast our views to others. 
We make them known to people when they ask, and that's basi- 
cally it. 

Chairman Glenn. Fine. Thank you, gentlemen. 

Our second panel includes Bernard Rosen, Distinguished Adjunct 
Professor in Residence at American University; David Burclanan, 
Secretary of the Association of Former Internal Revenue Execu- 
tives, and Marvin Morse, delegate to the American Bar Association, 
of the Federal Bar Association. 

Gentlemen, thank you, and Mr. Rosen, if you would lead off with 
your statement, we would appreciate it. 



41 

TESTIMONY OF BERNARD ROSEN,i DISTINGUISHED ADJUNCT 
PROFESSOR IN RESIDENCE, AMERICAN UNIVERSITY 

Mr. Rosen. Mr. Chairman and Senator Roth, my statement on 
proposed revisions of the Hatch Act in S. 185 is based on my experi- 
ence as a former executive director of the United States Civil Serv- 
ice Commission and also as a deputy executive director and a re- 
gional director. I also served as director of personnel for the De- 
partment of State, and I have been a long-time career employee in 
Washington and the field. 

My experience with employees of many agencies at all grade lev- 
els, white collar, blue collar, in field offices as well as in Washing- 
ton, convinces me that permitting Federal employees off duty to be 
actively involved in partisan politics would have such serious ad- 
verse consequences as to far outweigh the desirable benefits. 

Specifically, I believe it would undermine citizen confidence in 
the well-established nonpartisan execution of the laws. I believe it 
would create great distrust between political appointees and career 
executives, particularly when administrations change from one 
party to the other. And I believe it would generate employee uncer- 
tainty and suspicion that their off-duty political activity, or lack of 
it, plays a quiet but significant role in determining their assign- 
ments, their training, their promotions and their awards. 

In all these matters, perception is reality. That these and other 
adverse consequences are widely perceived is evident in editorials 
published in 56 newspapers in 26 States following the recent ac- 
tions to revise the Hatch Act in the House of Representatives. Al- 
most all, Mr. Chairman, say that the Senate should leave the 
Hatch Act alone. The few that don't say that simply indicate that 
what the House did was not desirable. 

In expressing opposition to permitting Federal employees to en- 
gage off duty in the robust business of partisan politics, the edi- 
torials evidenced strong concern that the Federal employees will be 
subject to partis£in political pressure as they exercise their vast 
powers. Among the powers exercised, as we all know, by Federal 
employees are: explaining and enforcing laws and regulatory re- 
quirements dealing with taxes, benefits, government contracts, civil 
service jobs, and numerous other matters which impact on people 
every day and in every walk of life. 

The tens of millions of people who are affected by the actions of 
Federal employees need to feel that there are no irrelevant consid- 
erations when these decisions are made. In such matters, trust is 
important. The active involvement of Federal employees in par- 
tisan political campaigns will undermine confidence in the impar- 
tiality of the civil service work force. 

The Des Moines Register editorial said it this way, Mr. Chair- 
man, "The public is asked to believe that Federal workers can be 
fierce political partisans at night and then change into completely 
nonpartisan civil servants by day. Hogwash." 

Critics of the current law charge that Federal workers do not 
have clear understanding of what they can and cannot do, and 
therefore "play it safe" by not engaging in political activities that 
are legal. Surely this can be solved, as progress has in fact been 



1 The prepared statement of Mr. Rosen appears on page 102. 



42 

made, by improving the information to employees and of course, if 
necessary, clarifying the law without wesikening it. 

If Federal employees are to be permitted to campaign in partisan 
elections, or "electioneer," as Thomas Jefferson called it, I believe 
that the adverse consequences could be reduced by amending S. 185 
to prohibit supervisors, managers, and executives from such activ- 
ity. This is a clearly identifiable group. Continuing to prohibit par- 
tisan political activity by the almost 300,000 employees in super- 
visory, managerial and executive positions would make three sig- 
nificant improvements in the bill. 

First, our Government would be able to give more credible assur- 
ance to the American people that decisions made within Federal 
agencies which affect their lives and fortunes will not be influenced 
by partisan political activity. 

Second, any new administration replacing one from the other po- 
litical party is far less likely to have doubts about the willingness 
and the commitment of career executives in the bureaucracy to 
help the new political leadership in every legal way to achieve its 
goals. 

And third, there would be no basis for civil service employees to 
assume that their supervisors will give them better assignments, 
promotions and awards because of their partisan political activity. 

If the Hatch Act is changed to increase the political rights of non- 
supervisory employees and postal workers, it is reasonable to as- 
sume that for many of them, what is permitted will be viewed as 
expected. Expected or not, some Federal employees will enter the 
partisan political arena in a very public way, with great vigor. To 
increase confidence that the laws will be applied properly, the 
American people would need to be informed that the current Hatch 
Act prohibitions continue for supervisors, managers, and execu- 
tives, and that these officials will be held accountable for the fair 
and impartial application of laws and agency policies. This, in my 
opinion, can help avoid an explosion of cjoiicism among Federal em- 
ployees, as well as the public, with regard to feiir and impartial 
execution of the laws. 

Mr. Chairman, I hope my statement will be helpful to the Com- 
mittee as it considers this very important subject, and I will at the 
appropriate time be glad to respond to questions, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you, Mr. Rosen. 

Mr. Burckman. 

TESTIMONfY OF DAVID BURCKMAN, SECRETARY, ASSOCIATION 
OF FORMER INTERNAL REVENUE EXECUTIVES 

Mr. Burckman. Mr. Chairman, Senator Roth, it is with a deep 
sense of appreciation that I appear before you today to express the 
views of my organization on what we believe may be one of the 
most critical junctures to face the Internal Revenue Service. 

My name is David Burckman, and I have the pleasure of serving 
as an officer of an organization of former Internal Revenue Service 
executives. Our organization was formed approximately 2 years ago 
with the sole purpose of being whatever help we could be to an or- 
ganization which m£iny of us had served for many years. 

Our organization does not take on political issues as a norm, but 
the passage of the revisions of the Hatch Act as currently written 



43 

may, in our judgment, seriously impair the effectiveness and im- 
partiality of the Internal Revenue Service and its employees. 

Some may remember the time years ago when rank-and-file IRS 
employees were permitted to take part in politics on their own 
time. At the same time, senior positions in the Internal Revenue 
Service were filled by political appointment, and the resultant 
scandals which resulted in congressional inquiries. Those inquiries 
clearly showed that because of the political pressures brought to 
bear on employees of the IRS, taxpayers were treated unfairly, and 
a number of Revenue employees were indicted on embezzlement 
charges. A number of very senior Service executives received pris- 
ons terms as a result of the management of the Revenue Service 
in those bygone days. 

To correct the conditions that led to the scandeils. President Tru- 
man and the Congress jointly agreed that in the fiiture, IRS em- 
ployees should be completely removed from political activities, that 
the only political appointments in the Service would be that of the 
commissioner and the chief counsel. All employees below their level 
would henceforth be career civil servants who stayed completely 
out of partisan politics. 

Our organization, which includes five former commissioners from 
both parties, is gravely concerned now about the damage that could 
be done to the integrity of the IRS and to the impartial role of the 
Nation's tax enforcement orgginization by the revisions of the Hatch 
Act this Committee is considering. 

We recognize that the bill contains protection against pressure 
upon employees to contribute money or to engage in political activi- 
ties. But that protection does not deal with the dangers that we 
fear most. The IRS experience in the 1940's demonstrated that em- 
ployees who were engaged in political activities often sought return 
favors when their candidates won. They often solicited the support 
of their Congressman or Senator when they competed for pro- 
motions or transfers or other kinds of on-the-job advances. Those 
factors forced other employees also to seek support from powerful 
political figures in order to advance, particularly when the higher- 
level positions in the office became vacant. 

When IRS field officials owed their own success to political spon- 
sors, they recognized that they were expected to respond when 
those sponsors asked them for return favors such as avoiding the 
collection of tax bills owed by certain prominent citizens, or not au- 
diting their tax returns. 

Employees with political supporters became immune to super- 
visors' directions and did not find it necessary to perform well in 
order to stay on the payroll. They also quickly learned that they 
did not need to follow normed office procedures, thereby making it 
relatively simple to embezzle money from the taxpayers. 

If IRS employees are again allowed to engage in political activi- 
ties on their own time, we do not see how those abuses can be pre- 
vented from gradually creeping back. 

We are aware that you are considering language from the Postal 
Service, £ind if it is included in the bill, it will go a long way toward 
avoiding many of the pitfalls we see in the original language of the 
bill. Including this language would, in our judgment, be a signal 



44 

improvement in the bill — if it can make it through both houses of 
Congress. 

But even if the postal language is included in the legislation, we 
still see a problem. If people are known to be active in a poUtical 
party, won't that affect what people think about the impartiality of 
the IRS? 

In our judgment, the best possible solution would be to exempt 
IRS employees from this bill, thereby ensuring that the highest 
level of integrity is maintained in our tax system. We recognize 
that there are many who claim that prohibiting Government em- 
ployees from taking part in the political arena is an infringement 
on their rights as citizens. But we believe that there is ample 
precedent for certain levels of Government to be treated differently 
than others. Members of Congress must abide by rules that aver- 
age Americans never face. Members of the military are prohibited 
from partisan political activity, and for very good reason. There are 
particular restrictions placed on law enforcement officials in the 
form of meeting certain age requirements. 

There are many other examples which clearly demonstrate that 
Federal employees are different and must adhere to different re- 
quirements than might be found in the private sector. 

We believe that working in the Federal Government is a privi- 
lege and a career to be sought by the finest from all walks of life. 
Refraining from partisan political activity seems to us to be a very 
small price for membership for those who want to serve. 

Thank you, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you, Mr. Burckman. 

Mr. Morse. 

TESTIMONY OF MARVIN H. MORSE, DELEGATE TO THE ABA, 
FEDERAL BAR ASSOCIATION 

Mr. Morse. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, Senator Roth. 

I am an administrative law judge in the Department of Justice, 
and I would suppose the only witness today who is in fact currently 
serving under the Hatch Act. 

I appear on behalf of the Federal Bar Association, which appre- 
ciates this opportunity to present once again its views on the im- 
portant question of amendments to the Hatch Act. The provisions 
of Title 5 of the United States Code which control the extent of par- 
ticipation by Federal civilian employees in this Nation's political 
processes, and which protect those employees from improper politi- 
cal solicitation and overreaching are of vital concern to this Asso- 
ciation and its members. 

The FBA President, Malcolm Monroe of New Orleans, being un- 
able to join us this morning, asked me to appear on behalf of the 
Association. I am Marvin H. Morse, FBA's delegate to the Amer- 
ican Bar Association, and for many years a member of the FBA ex- 
ecutive committee. The resume attached to my prepared remarks 
reflects the extent of my participation in the Association's activi- 
ties, particularly with respect to the interests of career Federal 
lawyers. 

As a former chair of the career service and judiciary sections, 
and as section coordinator during earlier congressional initiatives 



45 

in Hatch Act reform, I have played a role in developing FBA's posi- 
tion before the Committee on Governmental Affairs in 1987 £ind 
1988. 

Ours is a national association of 14,500 lawyers and judges, con- 
sisting of 100 chapters in cities throughout the country. The Asso- 
ciation's constitution describes its mission "to advance the science 
of jurisprudence and to promote the welfare, interests, education, 
and professional growth and development of the members of the 
Federal legal profession." Our reference to the Federal legal profes- 
sion is understood to include all who practice before or preside or 
work in Federal courts and agencies, and not only Federal employ- 
ees. 

Over 80 percent of our members and their leaders are not Gov- 
ernment attorneys; indeed, many were never in the Federal service. 
Nevertheless, because members of the bar as well as Federal career 
lawyers £ind judges share a commitment in common to Federal law 
and have a vital interest in the integrity of the Federal legal pro- 
fession, the FBA has attempted to play a role in Hatch Act reform 
efforts. 

At the outset, I note that we have no "political" interest in the 
debate over Hatch Act reform. It is understandable that there are 
differing views on the extent of adjustments, if any, that need to 
be made in the existing law. Our concern is that whatever fine-tun- 
ing may be in order from time to time, the bright line between per- 
mitted Eind prohibited conduct has worked well since 1939 when 
the Hatch Act was passed. As lawyers and judges, we have been 
reluctant to espouse change in the absence of proof that the exist- 
ing regime requires extensive overhaul. 

When we last appeared before the Committee, we urged the need 
for legislation to define "political activity" and to explicitly exclude 
certain categories of Federal personnel from the reach of newly per- 
missible political activities. We also expressed concern that the pro- 
posed new freedom for Federal personnel to engage in political ac- 
tivities on their own time and away from the work site can be an 
unanticipated invitation to partisanship. 

Regrettably, we do not understand that these concerns are ad- 
dressed in the pending legislation, nor have they been addressed 
in the continuing debate. For that reason, the FBA executive com- 
mittee at its February 6, 1993 meeting adopted the resolution at- 
tached to this statement. We reiterated our position that if Hatch 
Act reform is inevitable, "the protection of Federal employees and 
the American public which they serve" requires — and these are 
three quotations from our resolution — a definition of political activ- 
ity permitted by Federal employees; strong sanctions and struc- 
tural barriers inhibiting superiors or peers from pressuring employ- 
ees, either explicitly or implicitly, to engage in particular political 
activities, and an exclusion from the reform benefits of certain 
classes of Federal employees whose duties and responsibilities re- 
quire them to be absolutely insulated from any possible risk in 
order to maintain both in fact and appearance the integrity of the 
Federal Government. 

As to item one, absent statutory definition, expressed opinions at 
the time of enactment as to the permitted and proscribed activity 
may have little persuasiveness in the future. The opportunity to 



46 

thrust career employees into the pohtical arena, except under the 
narrowest of structures, can only serve to impair the credibility of 
a merit-based nonpartisan civil service. 

It is difficult, for example, to square the public's expectation of 
a nonpoliticsd public servant when confronted by their letter carrier 
or Social Security clsiims clerk who, off-duty, has distributed cam- 
paign literature for a partisan candidate. 

As to item 2, it has been suggested that earlier versions of the 
reform proposal established a clear line between workplace prohibi- 
tions and off-duty permissiveness. Unfortunately, however, the op- 
portunity for political off-duty activity becomes confused with on- 
duty relationships, inviting at a minimum, cronyism. Moreover, 
Federal workplace hours are not so neatly described as in more be- 
nign times. With flextime schedules and staggered hours to accom- 
modate commuting and other demands, the 8-to-5 day is no longer 
the paradigm, introducing complexities to enforcement. 

As to item 3, there are certain positions in the executive branch 
concerning which the public ought to be particularly assured that 
there is no semblance of political partisanship. The bill should rec- 
ognize that incumbents of certain duties and responsibilities are in 
no event to be susceptible to political activity. Those individuals 
who should be absolutely insulated from risk of improper pressure 
both in fact and appearance include Federal law enforcement offi- 
cers, uniformed and otherwise, attorneys generally, administrative 
law judges, and other independent adjudicators in particular, and 
election officials. 

We recognize that there are contrasting views as to the constitu- 
tionality of the Hatch Act. We do not disagree lightly with those 
who argue that Federal personnel are discriminated against in 
their First Amendment opportunities for political advocacy. 

We do, however, respect the Supreme Court's balancing test and 
agree that the present law is valid. The Hatch Act reflects a know- 
ing compact between Federal personnel and the Government. Any 
alteration to that compact should respect the role of Federal per- 
sonnel in their responsibilities to the public, a role not made easier 
if the public perceives that day-to-day governmental operations are 
managed by public servants susceptible to political overreaching. 

I am here, as you know, representing the concerns expressed by 
the Federal Bar Association. By good coincidence, I share those 
views. As a personal comment, I note that I have served as assist- 
ant general counsel of the General Services Administration and of 
the former Post Office Department, £ind as assistant administrator 
of the Small Business Administration. In those merit appoint- 
ments, in agencies known not to be free of political pressure, I 
never once was subjected to improper influence, importuning solici- 
tation, or the appearance of such improprieties. I am apprehensive 
that my successors, in a regime pursuant to S. 185 in its present 
form, no matter how well-intentioned, might not be able to say the 
same. 

Years ago, I litigated cases for the American Civil Liberties 
Union and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. Even now, I am a con- 
tributor to the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights. I find nei- 
ther those experiences nor that commitment inconsistent with 



47 

skepticism about significant alteration of the Federal employee po- 
litical activities playing field as it exists today. 

I thank you for providing the Federal Bar Association the oppor- 
tunity to express its concerns. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you. Thank you all for your statements. 

Mr. Rosen, I wanted to make sure you understood that as to your 
comments about the House bill — and you went on a little bit about 
the House bill — that is not this bill. 

Mr. Rosen. I know that, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Glenn. And I don't want anyone to think that I am 
accepting your comments about the House bill as though you are 
commenting on this, because they are completely two different 
things. 

Mr. Rosen. I believe all my comments, Mr. Chairman, relate to 
S. 185. None of my comments related to the House bill. I indicated 
in my more detailed prepared statement that I was aware of H.R. 
20 and that there were differences between H.R. 20 an S. 185, but 
my comments relate entirely to S. 185. I excluded the distinctions. 

Chairman Glenn. All right. You then went on in your state- 
ment — and I won't read the statement here — to comment about the 
newspapers around the country, 53 of them in 20 States or what- 
ever, that commented about some of these things. I believe at least 
most of the ones I have seen in Ohio, when that big spate of edi- 
torials came out all over the country from whatever source they 
were engendered — maybe it was just because the House had 
worked on this — that most of them referred to provisions in the 
House bill, not in the Senate bill. 

Mr. Rosen. Well, while I can't differ with you on Ohio, Mr. 
Chairman, I did read not only the 53 that I referred to in my testi- 
mony, but I subsequently received 11 more, read every word in 
them, and I do have to tell you that the references to the fundrais- 
ing were minimal in these 64. Overall, they just wanted to leave 
the Hatch Act alone. And the references to that provision, while 
they appeared, as I indicated in my testimony, there was no ques- 
tion that it was not the dominant influence, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, just a personal experience — I ran for of- 
fice last year, and I visited editorial boards all over the State of 
Ohio, one after the other, all the major newspapers and a number 
of the minor ones in Ohio as well. And once I explained what we 
did with this, even though they might have had a preconceived 
idea about it, without exception, when I said what the bill actually 
does as opposed to what their preconception was, from whatever 
source, they didn't seem to have any problem with it. 

Mr. Rosen. With all due respect, Mr. Chairman, you also favored 
me with a letter in response to a letter I had written you, and the 
major example in the letter was one that you discussed here earlier 
about stuffing envelopes. I must say, Mr. Chairman, that my expe- 
rience with executives and managers and supervisors in Washing- 
ton and in the field indicates to me that as important as stuffing 
envelopes is, and it is very important, that if they get involved in 
partisan politics, they will put forth the intelligence and the energy 
that they have in the more vigorous parts of our robust political 
process, and that really is what I was focused on, sir. 



48 

Chairman Glenn. Well, I presume, then, that you are also not 
in favor of permitting any political contributions. 

Mr. Rosen. No, I have not said that. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, how can you make a difference between 
the two? 

Mr. Rosen. To me, the issue is entirely — because, as you know 
from my comments, the issue revolves around the public posture in 
it. In the one, it is the Federal Government employees going out 
and getting involved actively and publicly; in the other, they are 
making a personal decision, as they do on many matters. I for one 
do not believe that Federal employees get pressured to make cash 
contributions. 

Chairman Glenn. You don't? 

Mr. Rosen. No, I do not. 

Chairman Glenn. You don't believe there is any pressure that 
ever comes out from superiors or from anybody else — ^you don't 
think there is any pressure at all for a political contribution? 

Mr. Rosen. I didn't say "any," sir. What I said, Mr. Chairman, 
was I believe — and we have a work force of almost 3 million, and 
I will just deal with the 2.2 million in the competitive civil service 
and merely suggest to you that it would be the rarest of instances 
where anyone would say to someone in the competitive civil serv- 
ice, **You ought to make a cash contribution to this campaign or 
that campaign," that is, in terms of a supervisor saying that. 

Chairman Glenn. And you think if people go home at night, they 
go home to Alexandria or wherever they live, and they want to go 
down to the local place and stuff some envelopes or participate in 
a phonebank or something like that, or tack signs on the posts, and 
things like that, that they would be subject to wide coercion to do 
that than they would to make a cash contribution? 

Mr. Rosen. I am not suggesting that they would be coerced into 
doing that. There is nothing in my testimony that indicates that. 

Chairman Glenn. No, but I was trying to get the difference be- 
tween cash and in-kind contributions. You said you have never 
known them to be coerced into giving cash, but you then ssdd that 
you thought it was wrong for them to make in-kind contributions. 

Mr. Rosen. Yes, but I did not indicate that they would be coerced 
into giving in-kind contributions. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, then, what is the objection to it? 

Mr. Rosen. I am suggesting that the Congress in its wisdom 
drew in the Hatch Act in 1939, that drew that distinction and indi- 
cated these various prohibitions that were then laid out further in 
rules, I am merely suggesting to you that that places the civil serv- 
ice employee into the public arena of partisan politics. 

And I am suggesting also, Mr. Chairman, respectfully, that it 
would not end with stuffing envelopes; that the supervisors, man- 
agers, executives, and many nonsupervisory employees who are 
professionals, have capacity and ability, Mr. Chairman, to go way 
beyond stuffing envelopes and operate in the public arena. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, let me tell you something they are per- 
mitted to do right now. It is absolutely legal for a person to go 
home and put a big sign out in the yard — "I favor Bush," or "I favor 
Clinton," or whomever the candidate is. Do you think that should 
be prohibited? That is certainly partisan — and that is permitted. 



49 

Mr. Rosen. I think this is up to the Congress and up to the ad- 
ministration of the laws to decide if that is unreasonable, and if 
that is unreasonable, to exclude it. 

All I am suggesting, Mr. Chairman, is that the sweep of S. 185 
in eliminating the prohibitions that it proposes to eliminate are so 
serious that they really should be unacceptable, serious, and would 
produce the adverse consequences that I laid out in my testimony 
here. 

Chairman Glenn. Let me just make sure that everybody under- 
stands the differences between the House bill and this bill, because 
the House bill does not include any penalties; the Senate bill has 
3 years in jail, a potential $5,000 fine for coercion, and if there is 
a second violation of the Hatch Act, it is mandatory dismissal — it 
wouldn't be up to the boss; they'd have to be kicked out, fired. 
That's pretty tough. 

The House bill also allows running for partisan local office and 
allows solicitation from the general public. I could never vote for 
something like that; we don't permit that in this bill, and I will 
note vote for that. If we can't come out of conference with some- 
thing that takes out some of those objections, well, then, we just 
won't come out of conference with anything, that's all. I think that 
is wrong. 

Mr. Rosen. Well, I agree with you, Mr. Chairman, that that is 
wrong and shouldn't be in there. But I also believe that the lifting 
of the other major prohibitions that are in S. 185 are equally 
wrong. I think all the House bill does is make the cheese more 
binding on this issue, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. OK. 

Mr. Burckman, when you referred to when jobs were political 
and so on, and the bad things that happened — was this after the 
Hatch Act came in, and were the* people that you represent not 
"Hatched" at that time? 

Mr. Burckman. Yes, sir, but if memory serves me, the Hatch Act 
came in in 1939. The scandals in the IRS occurred in 1940's and 
1950's. 

Chairman Glenn. Were they not "Hatched" then? 

Mr. Burckman. Yes, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. OK. Well, what had happened, then? Was the 
law just not being enforced, or what? 

Mr. Burckman. No, sir. What happened was that in those days, 
senior positions in Internal Revenue were filled by political ap- 
pointees. They weren't violative of the Hatch Act. That was the sys- 
tem in place. 

Senator if I may, there has been a great deal of dialogue here 
today about pressure on the Federal employee. And if I may, I'd 
like to call attention that I am only talking about Internal Revenue 
Service; my comments do not go to the entire Federal Government. 
But I don't think there has been much consideration given to what 
I would term the emibitious employee who wants to get ahead. And 
we keep talking about stuffing envelopes. OK, so I'm ambitious, 
and I go and talk 50 of my fellow coworkers into helping me stuff 
envelops, and I make it known to the person who is running for 
office how many hundreds of thousands of envelopes I got out. At 
some point in time, there is a very good chance that I may go to 



50 

that candidate, if he or she wins, and say, hey, look, I need some 
help. 

It isn't just pressure down; it is pressure up that I am concerned 
about. 

Chairman GLENN. I think — and correct me if I am wrong — but I 
think what you just described is prohibited under current law, and 
I don't think we change that. 

Mr. BURCKMAN. How is it prohibited, sir? 

Chairman Glenn. You can't give favoritism for political activity. 

Mr. Burckman. That's right, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, that's prohibited by law now. What's the 
difference? 

Mr. Burckman. Well, how do you police it, sir? 

Chairman Glenn. Well, we just went through that a little while 
ago. The fact that a law is not adequately enforced doesn't mean 
that the law is bad or that we should ignore it. 

Mr. Burckman. No, sir; I agree. But again, my comment pertains 
only to Internal Revenue. When you open the door to partisan po- 
litical activity by someone in the evening, and then tomorrow, he 
is going to sit across the table from and audit a taxpayer, I submit 
to you, sir, that there is another kind of pressure that exists, be- 
cause revenue officers and revenue agents are in small towns all 
over America. They aren't just in major cities 

Chairman Glenn. I realize that. 

Mr. Burckman [continuing]. And people know who they are. 

Chairman Glenn. Sure, I know that, and I am concerned about 
your point. But I presume, then, if you are going to follow this line 
logicsJly, that you would advocate stopping any contributions. 

Mr. Burckman. In the Internal Revenue Service? 

Chairman Glenn. In the Internal Revenue Service, they should 
not be permitted to make any contribution. 

Mr. Burckman. I think that's a fine idea. 

Chairman Glenn. That they be prohibited. 

Mr. Burckman. Yes, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. OK. Why? That's hable to be used the same 
way you said before. 

Mr. Burckman. Yes, sir. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, I just think you are taking too much 
away from people who are honest people; they aren't trying to bend 
the system. They are honest folks. They are trying to do their job 
out there. If you go home at night, and you want to run for school 
board, or you want to be partisan or do whatever, or you want to 
contribute to a candidate of your choice — I just don't think every- 
body is out to diddle the system that way. I think we have honest 
people out there, and there are going to be violations under what- 
ever law, and we have got to catch those people. That's the reason 
we have put in stiff fines under the proposal here. But I think to 
say that you are taking a whole class of American citizens, and not 
to allow them to make a contribution — I'll tell you what I favor, 
and I have come out for this recently here not too long ago. I think 
we ought to take contributions out completely on Federal offices 
and make Federal support for Federal elections; that way, we'll 
take all this garbage out of it, the PACs and everything else we've 
got — that is at the heart of the problems of our system. So I favor 



51 

Federal financing, and I have come around to that over the years 
just because I have seen enough on the other side. 

So I might at some time agree with you, but not just to take one 
class of citizens who are honest people, who are interested in what 
is going on in Government, who are part of Government, and they 
can make a voluntary contribution; I don't see anjrthing wrong with 
that right now. 

Mr. BuRCKMAN. Sir, I agree with you, except the one class of citi- 
zens we are talking about right now are the people who have the 
ability to make value judgments about how much money a tax- 
payer owes. And I submit to you, sir, that is a different kind of 
Federal employee. 

Chairman Glenn. OK, but I want to submit for the record — and 
you bring up a good point — a letter from the Internal Revenue 
Service that describes to us for the record exactly the system that 
is gone through, the random selection and so on, which goes a long 
way toward cutting out the abuses that you are talking about that 
could occur. 1 I think the IRS has done pretty good. Now, the IRS 
has a lot of other problems, and this Committee has worked very 
closely with them. There is the modernization program, which I 
won't get into now, because we have had hearing after hearing 
after hearing, and I just hope they get that thing straightened out 
sometime within the next few years — but that's a dijfferent subject 
£ind not the subject of today's hearing. 

Mr. Burckman, in requesting your testimony today, a member of 
my staff spoke with Mr. Ed Preston of your organization, who said 
that if we adopted an amendment recommended by the Clinton ad- 
ministration, we would go a long way toward meeting AFIRE's con- 
cerns with S. 185. Now, we are looking at that, and I don't have 
much doubt we will probably adopt that. It is my understanding 
that their amendment will be based upon language in the Postal 
Code which bars political recommendations for Postal Service em- 
ployees. If we adopt that amendment, does that take care of some 
of your objections to this? 

Mr. Burckman. Some of them, yes, sir; not all of them. 

Chairman GLENN. Not all of them. You would still be opposed to 
185. 

Mr. Burckman. Yes, sir, I would. 

Chairman Glenn. OK. 

Mr. Morse. Mr. Chairman, might I respond further to a subject 
that has been discussed with the other witnesses? 

Chairman GLENN. Surely. 

Mr. Morse. That is the matter of stuffing envelopes, if I may — 
and I don't mean to denigrate that as £in activity. I think the prob- 
lem, with all respect, is that both the present law and the pending 
legislation do not define political activity. We have developed a 
body of interpretation in the present law which leads us to the pos- 
ture, as the Chairman described, that an employee can wear a 
campaign button. And, as anticipated under the language of the 
bill if enacted, the employee could stuff envelopes, which today he 
could not do, but could not wear a button in the future — the dif- 
ference being whether it is on the job or the off the job. 



^See page 116. 



52 

Chairman Glenn. Right. 

Mr. Morse. So you know where I am coming from, by the way, 
Senator, I was on a program in Cleveland last September — not 
having been able to obtain a bumper sticker at any convenient loca- 
tion in Washington, I went to the Glenn headquarters and bought 
a Clinton campaign sticker, which is still on my car — although I 
have some doubts in light of the President's posture with respect 
to the employee situation today whether I should keep it on there — 
however, the point is that under present law, it is my understand- 
ing that I can in fact keep a bumper sticker on my car 

Chairman Glenn. You may be interested to know I'm sort of on 
your side on that one, and I have told the President that, and we 
have discussed this publicly, as a matter of fact, because this Com- 
mittee worked very hard through the years to get civil service pay 
up to where it is comparable to regular civilian pay. We have taken 
the lead in that, and we had things going pretty good, with the Pay 
Comparability Act of 1990 and so on, and then we've sort of gotten 
the rug pulled out from under us, at least temporarily, on that. 

Anyway, go ahead. I didn't mean to change the subject. 

Mr. Morse. Well, I think the underl5dng question is not stuffing 
envelopes, but as I understand the Act, the Chairman is using that 
as an illustration, but what the Act contemplates is that an em- 
ployee — this would be proposed section 7323 — could take part "in 
political management or in political campaigns." So I think you 
have a starting point when you speak of stuffing envelopes, but 
that is just one of a whole gambit of potential activity. And I reaJly 
think in fairness to the dialogue that it is not a tension between 
political cash campaign contributions, which we can all make 
now — £ind with respect to my co-witness here, I would not want to 
take that away — but it doesn't start and stop with stuffing enve- 
lopes. I think that is just an illustration of the dividing line be- 
tween on-duty and off-duty. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, I didn't mean I was going to restrict ev- 
erybody just to the envelope business; don't get me wrong. 

Mr. Morse. Well, a simple amendment would take care of that, 
obviously. 

Chairman Glenn. OK. Well, you know what I meant by that. I 
\yas using it as an illustration of that harmless, benign political ac- 
tivity that goes on in every campaign. And I am glad you were in 
our headquarters in Cleveland, incidentally. 

Senator Roth, go ahead. We're letting time get away from us. 

Senator RoTH. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 

Let me make a couple observations before I ask any questions. 
First of all, while we are considering here S. 185, it is also true that 
before we get legislation that is enacted into law, there will be a 
conference, and the House bill goes much further than the Senate 
bill. 

I would also point out that Mr. King indicated that the adminis- 
tration would sign whatever came out. I would just point out that 
the House bill permits solicitation of the public, with certain excep- 
tions, and also permits running for office. So no one here can say 
exactly what the final form of the legislation will be, although I 
have to say I suspect there will be legislation reported out of a con- 
ference. 



53 

The second point I would like to make is that even under S. 185, 
we aren't just talking about stuffing a few envelopes. S. 185 goes 
much further — you can hold office in a political party; you can 
manage, organize and participate in political campaigns and meet- 
ings; you can distribute partisan campaign literature and solicit 
votes; you can publicly endorse partisan candidates and urge others 
to support them. 

Now, let me ask you this question. Let's say in this last cam- 
paign a high civil servant headed an organization endorsing George 
Bush for President, and we have an election of a new President. 
Do you think that that Federal employee who was active in cam- 
paigning for President Bush is going to have the same opportunity 
that he would otherwise have had? Mr. Rosen. 

Mr. Rosen. Senator, that one is a real easy pitch that you gave 
me, and I appreciate it. It is unquestionable, sir, that that particu- 
lar Federal employee would have great difficulty, particularly if he 
was a career manager or career executive. 

May I just say this. Senator Roth, that when I had the great 
privilege of being in the civil service and occupying key positions, 
during change in administrations, there were many instances 
where presidential appointees came to me and asked me for advice 
on how they could move out their senior career executives. Why? 
Well, it is a product of the last administration; it is a holdover. I 
can't depend on that individual. So it was very helpful to be able 
to first explain to them about the Hatch Act and the prohibitions 
auid the fact that over the decades there has been built a non- 
partisan civil service, and that that civil service can serve a new 
administration in every legal way, and that they can depend on 
them. Almost invariably. Senator Roth, when 6 months later or 8 
months later, when I would run into that presidential appointee 
and ask how was so-and-so doing, I would hear, "Well, you know, 
he is working out just fine." 

But, yes, when there is a change in administration — and it is un- 
derstandable to me — there is great doubt, great uncertainty, about 
whether those people who were in key positions, recommending 
policy and applying the law, will they be able to help me in terms 
of carrying out the goals of the new administration. I think the an- 
swer is for anyone who has been actively involved in the campaign 
for the opponent, the person who lost, I think their opportunities 
will be severely, severely curtailed. But more importantly, Senator 
roth, I believe that the entire civil service then comes into deeper 
question in the minds of the new administration. 

Senator ROTH. And I think that was once a problem. I can re- 
member years ago, there was a staunch feeling among Republicans 
that the civil service were Democrats, or liberals, whatever you 
wanted to C£dl it. But I think we have overcome that, and I agree 
with you, that's what concerns me. 

It goes back, I think, Mr. Burckman, to the point you made about 
the ambitious. To get ahead, it's going to be clear, particularly as 
you rise to the higher positions in the bureaucracy, that if you 
want to move further, there is nothing to prohibit you from being 
politically active. So you are really putting the civil servant in a 
very difficult position. 



54 

So if we are going to pass legislation, shouldn't we at least ex- 
empt that band of high civil servants who pretty much report to 
the politicians, so that they are not put in that difficult, embarrass- 
ing position? 

I'd be interested in each of your reactions to that. 

Mr. Rosen. I'd be glad to say I would not only exempt them, sir; 
I would think that it would be useful to exempt the managers and 
supervisors as well, because all of these people are crucial in terms 
of the impartial administration of the laws. 

Senator Roth. Do you gentlemen agree with that? 

Mr. Morse. Yes, Senator. For many years, as I suggested in my 
statement, of holding supervisory positions in agencies, I reported 
directly to political appointees, and I thrived, not financially but 
professionally, in an environment which I credit to the Hatch Act 
in its protection against any overreaching. And as I suggested, in 
30 years, I have never been subjected to any kind of influence or 
pressure. Maybe it was there, and I didn't see it, but I doubt that. 

Senator RoTH. There was some talk about adoption of the postal 
language, and I think the general reaction was that that was a 
step forward. But let me point out, that only takes care of the Con- 
gress. So that even if you prohibit members of Congress from mak- 
ing such contracts, shouldn't there at least be as much concern 
about pressure from the White House — and I don't care whether it 
is a Republican or Democrat President — and from the political ap- 
pointees in the various departments? Don't you have the same 
problem there? 

Mr. Rosen. I would think that we would. Senator Roth. I'd like 
to also suggest — and I think this refers to 0PM Director King's tes- 
timony when he appeared before the Committee here earlier this 
week — although these changes are useful in the Postal Service, be- 
cause when they were introduced, partisan political considerations 
were really paramount in securing appointments and promotions, 
but that has not been the situation in the Federal civil service for 
many decades. 

So my conclusion is, really, that making those changes would not 
deal with the problems that would be caused in lifting the prohibi- 
tions as contemplated by S. 185, Senator Roth. 

Senator RoTH. Let me ask you, Mr. Rosen, a further question. 
You were a former executive director of the civil service, so you are 
extremely knowledgeable about the history of that civil service. 
Some proponents of S. 185 argue that times have changed since 
1939, that the Federal Government is much more merit-based. 
Does the movement to a merit system mean there is no longer a 
need for a Hatch Act? 

Mr. Rosen. Senator Roth, absolutely note. The merit system is 
fragile, and it can be easily undermined. Its two greatest assets for 
recruiting and retaining high competence to serve the American 
people are, first, the open, competitive examining system, and sec- 
ond, the existing prohibitions on political activity. The open, com- 
petitive examining does give reasonable assurance to the American 
people that positions will be filled on the basis of a relative ability 
and knowledge. And the prohibitions on political activity builds 
public confidence that the civil service will be fair and impartial. 



55 

and in doing so, Senator Roth, it actually contributes significantly 
to the recruitment and retention of high competence. 

Senator RoTH. Mr. Burckman, let me ask you a question a little 
along the lines of one I asked Mr. Rosen a few minutes ago. If you 
have a civil servant who is politically active, let's say again for 
Bush, who is a member of the IRS, Eoid he does it properly, he does 
it off-duty, but then the daytime comes, and he is auditing some 
prominent Democrat account. Now, there is a lot of decisionmaking 
to do when you go through it, and don't you run the risk that that 
prominent Democrat businessman is going to feel that this Repub- 
lican may not be objective in his decisionmaking? Aren't we under- 
cutting confidence in the system? 

Mr. Burckman. Yes, sir, that's right. It strikes at the appearance 
if you will, of impartiality about the Service. And while it may 
sound extreme, we have always believed that the Service ought to 
be like Caesar's wife, if you will — it should not even give the ap- 
pearance of any partiality one way or the other. And if I were that 
Democrat you just described, I'd be a little nervous at that audit. 

Senator Roth. And the auditor might be extremely careful, but 
nevertheless it is a matter of perception. 

Mr. Burckman. That's right. 

Senator Roth. So it undercuts confidence in the nonpartisan ad- 
ministration of the Federal laws. 

Mr. Burckman. Exactly, Senator. 

Senator Roth. I know you only served in IRS, but isn't that true 
in other sensitive areas — maybe I should ask you, Mr. Morse — for 
example, in the law enforcement area, don't you run the same risk? 

Mr. Morse. Yes, and in my original statement, I did describe an 
area of concern that was only meant to be illustrative. We did not 
mean to exclude, for example, the Internal Revenue Service. I 
think that's just another illustration. But certainly, law enforce- 
ment officials, uniformed or otherwise — and I mentioned attorneys, 
generally, and of course, independent adjudicators in particular. 

Now, we as administrative law judges are insulated even more 
from not only political influences, but from agency managerial in- 
fluence, too, so that is a special situation. But that doesn't make 
us any less vulnerable to the kind of perceptions indeed if we 
should become engaged in or susceptible to others who are engaged 
in political activity. 

Senator Roth. Mr. Morse, you are a prominent attorney, a judge. 
Let me ask you your opinion. Under S. 185, the affirmative lan- 
guage says that, "an employee may take an active part in politicEd 
management or in political campaigns." Does that language in your 
judgment preclude future Presidents from issuing Executive orders 
like those of Theodore Roosevelt or Thomas Jefferson, barring ac- 
tive partisan participation in campaigns? 

Mr. Morse. Yes, Senator Roth. I think the answer is that if en- 
acted, it is a legislative command which would tie the hands of a 
President. And I have suggested a couple of times this morning 
that one of the concerns is the lack of definition of political activity, 
and that that is true also of the environment under the existing 
law. 



56 

But the thrust of the law is different. Today, the thrust is a pro- 
hibition, and in the proposal, the thrust of S. 185 would be an open- 
ing of the door, so that while there would be room for administra- 
tive interpretation, there isn't any room to get out of the param- 
eters of the Act. So the kind of prohibition that we have historically 
seen moving forward that has been described today would in fact 
be inconsistent with the mandate of section 7323 as you have 
quoted it. 

Senator ROTH. S. 185 attempts to make a distinction between the 
Federal employee on the job and being politically active off the job. 
Do you, Mr. Morse, think that you can draw that kind of line? Is 
that realistic? 

Mr. Morse. I think you can draw it up to a point, and certainly, 
the mechanical aspect of it is clear. I suggested that it is very hard 
to tell in gross terms, if you are looking at a work force profile, who 
is on the job and who is not, because people are coming and going. 
There is much more of that today than there used to be. But so 
far as whether or not it would be workable, I think if you are deal- 
ing with the fact of activity, yes; if you are dealing with the subtle 
influences and the opportunity for continuing a dialogue, for exam- 
ple, between personnel, there is some opportunity for fudging. 

I do think, though, that the mechanical line is there. The impres- 
sionistic one is the thing that we are dealing with. 

I don't want to get into a discussion, I think, sir, as to the capa- 
bility of enforcing it in terms of whether or not you have people 
who are going to intentiongdly violate it, except to note that suc- 
cessful people in the business world, as in Government, are innova- 
tive, and I don't think we can today predict just what the param- 
eters will be in the future unless either the legislation spells it out, 
or there is a very clear mandate, in the legislative history, for ex- 
ample, which tells us just what is proscribed and what is per- 
mitted. Otherwise, over time, we are going to get as many or more 
variations than any of us can think of today. 

Senator Roth. You mentioned that you are an administrative 
law judge. Would this legislation, if adopted, mean an administra- 
tive judge could be politically active? 

Mr. Morse. If there is no exclusion, then I think an administra- 
tive law judge or any other adjudicator in the executive branch 
would be as free as any other employee to participate in the very 
activity that is contemplated in the term "political management" or 
in political campaigns. My concern, as I am sitting with the Com- 
mittee today, is whether it would be feasible, whether it would be 
lawful, for an administrator to attempt to narrow those param- 
eters, and I think not. I think the command of Congress would say 
no. 

So unless the legislation excludes by definition certain categories 
of Federal personnel 

Senator ROTH. Even though the administrative judge, as the 
name implies, he or she is a judge and should be totally impartial. 

Mr. Morse. Yes; we serve under Title V provisions of the Admin- 
istrative Procedures Act, and that excuses us from many manage- 
rial oversights and intrusions, but it would not fi'ee us, I think, 
from the provisions of this Act. 



57 

So I think the Committee would have to recommend, or on the 
floor there would have to be an amendment. 

Senator Roth. I strongly agree with that. 

Gentlemen, time is moving on, and I may have some further 
questions in writing, but let me express my personal appreciation 
to each and every one of you for your very helpful testimony. 

Chairman Glenn. Let me just make a statement before we go to 
our last panel, David Denholm, president of the Public Service Re- 
search Council. 

We have on-the-job/off-the-job differentiations right now; we have 
that. And that is part of the problem in that the administration of 
those things has been so crazy through the years, even though they 
have been cleaned up a little bit in recent years. What S. 185 does 
is try to make these lines more clear. 

Mr. Rosen mentioned the Social Security claims adjuster. Well, 
that claims adjuster can show up on the job with a political button 
if he wants to. He can show his preference if he wants to to the 
people he is dealing with right now. In our law, we prohibit that; 
S. 185 would say you cannot do that. You can't influence the public 
that way by wearing a button. The current Hatch Act doesn't say 
what size button; you could have one that covered your whole 
chest, or you could even put a bumper sticker across yourself if you 
wanted to, I guess, so that nobody could miss it. We wouldn't per- 
mit that under our bill. So we are tightening up in that regard. 

So we have on-job/off-job differentiations right now 

Mr. Rosen. If the Chairman will indulge me. 

Chairman Glenn [continuing]. Just a moment — civil servants 
can be politically active now, but the problem is in very inconsist- 
ent ways, and that's what we try to straighten out here. We have 
brought up repeatedly here buttons and bumper stickers and con- 
tributions, but not in-kind — you can put a placard in your yard, on 
your car, but you can't waive it on a stick. It is just a hodge-podge 
of things that need to be cleaned up. 

And further, I wanted to point out very, very specifically some- 
thing that has been so misrepresented, and in many of the edi- 
torials that I have seen, and that is, they call it "repeal" of the 
Hatch Act. It is not "repeal" of the Hatch Act; it is reform of the 
Hatch Act in ways that are supposed to make it more fair for ev- 
erybody, and with very stiff penalties for violations which are not 
there right now. 

Just one more thing before we move on. I wanted to make sure 
that we understood — the merit system came up, and let me just 
read this: "When the Hatch Act was passed in 1939, the develop- 
ment of a professional civil service was being undermined by pa- 
tronage appointments" — in a Democratic administration, I might 
add, too. Senator Roth. "More than 60 new Federal agencies had 
been created by the end of 1934, but only five had been placed 
under jurisdiction of the Civil Service Commission. This meant the 
majority of these agencies" — 60 of them, brand new ones — "were 
being staffed on the basis of political patronage rather than merit 
competition." And that was wrong. 



58 

"This rapid growth of patronage jobs of somewhere around 
300,000"— they estimated about 300,000 jobs— "caused congres- 
sional concern that some civil servants might be working for par- 
tisan rather than national interests." And I don't doubt the least 
bit that that was the case. 

"The issues raised in the 1939 congressional debate offer a good 
perspective on the motivation for the original Act. I quote from the 
floor debate of Mr. McLean of New Jersey on July 20th, 1939. He 
said, and I quote: 'It was established many years ago that the 
merit system should control in the appointment of persons to public 
office and that the political idea that to the victor belongs the 
spoils should no longer be the measure by which appointment is 
made. If that principle had been adhered to, there would be no rea- 
son and hence no demand for this legislation. But the New Deal, 
under the pretense of emergency, saw fit to disregard the merit 
system and to provide in all legislation adopted that in making ap- 
pointments to public office, the provisions of civil service laws 
should not apply. But for this, there would be no occasion for the 
enactment of this legislation.' " 

That is the end of his quote. 

When passing the Hatch Act, Congress was. attempting to protect 
the civil service from undue politick influence by prohibiting Fed- 
eral workers from engaging in partisan political activities alto- 
gether. Fifty-four years later, we have a dramatically different situ- 
ation. We have an established professional civil service, hired on a 
competitive, merit basis. We also have many different laws on the 
books to protect Federed employees fi-om coercion. 

So the situation has changed. To the people who say that it is 
just the same as it was back in 1939, that is just not the case. So 
this is not to repeal the Hatch Act; it is to reform it in ways that 
make it more fair for everybody and so people will understand ex- 
actly what the laws are that they are operating under. 

Mr. Rosen. Mr. Chairman, may I make a comment, sir? 

Chairman Glenn. Yes, if you can be brief, please, because we 
have to move on. 

Mr. Rosen. I will, sir. I would just mention, Mr. Chairman, that 
the issue here comes down to whether we are also repealing what 
existed prior to the Hatch Act and applied to all civil service em- 
ployees in the competitive service. 

The prohibitions that were placed in effect by President Teddy 
Roosevelt in 1907 by Executive order, in efl'ect, many of these pro- 
hibitions would be eliminated by S. 185, so 

Chairman Glenn. Which ones? That's a pretty sweeping charge. 

Mr. Rosen. Well, the Executive order that President Roosevelt 
issued applied the basic Hatch Act prohibitions to the competitive 
service, and what the Hatch Act did, as you indicated in your state- 
ment, was extended that and wrote into law what was in the Exec- 
utive order and extended it to all these new agencies that Presi- 
dent Franklin Roosevelt had estabhshed. So S. 185 really goes sig- 
nificantly beyond just the change that took place in 1939, sir, with 
all due respect. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, with all due respect, I just disagree. But 
we're going to have to move on. 



59 

Senator Roth. Mr. Chairman, I would like to make a comment. 
I don't want to get into argument about whether it reforms or re- 
peals, but it certainly guts the Hatch Act. Just let me point out 
that last year in the majority report, it said that section 9(a) is 
widely regarded as the heart of the Act. And section 9(a) is the sec- 
tion that says an employee in the executive agency may not — not — 
take an active part in political management or in political C£un- 
paigns. 

Now, what S. 185 provides is that an employee may take an ac- 
tive part — may take an active part — in political amendment or in 
political campaigns. So as is said in the majority report, you are 
striking at the very heart of the Act. 

Now, you can say it is not totally negating it, but it is taking out 
the most important part, and no one should make any mistake 
about that. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, we won't make any mistake about it, be- 
cause on the job, we are tightening up on exactly what Senator 
Roth just said. There will be less political activity on the job where 
the coercion really can occur; we tighten up on that, so that prohi- 
bition is tighter with this Act than it was before. So it is the heart. 

Senator RoTH. We'll buy that part of the bill, Mr. Chairman. 

Chairman Glenn. Pardon? 

Senator ROTH. We'll buy that part of the bill. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, OK, then, you buy the whole bill. I'm 
glad to hear your endorsement for this this morning. 

Senator RoTH. Not quite, not quite. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you, gentlemen. 

Senator RoTH. Thank you very much. 

Chairman Glenn. Our last witness this morning is David 
Denholm, president of the Public Service Research Council. 

David, we are very sorry we've kept you waiting so long this 
morning, but you've been listening, so you know the gist of where 
we are going this morning. We look forward to your testimony, 

TESTIMONY OF DAVID DENHOLM,^ PRESIDENT, PUBLIC 
SERVICE RESEARCH COUNCIL 

Mr. Denholm. I'm going to take it easy on you because so much 
of what I wanted to say has been covered so well, so much better 
than I could, by other witnesses, and what I had prepared was a 
relatively long statement, and there are a few things that I think 
deserve special emphasis. 

Mr. Chairman, members of the Committee, my name is David 
Denholm. I am the president of the Public Service Research Coun- 
cil, which is a national citizens' lobby concerned with the influence 
of unions on public policy. I appreciate the opportunity to testify 
here today against S. 185, a bill which we think would destroy the 
Hatch Act's protections against a politicized bureaucracy and sub- 
ject Federal and postal workers to political exploitation. 

I will eliminate the brief history of the law and move to a con- 
cern about passage of the Civil Service Reform Act in 1978, at 
which time Senator Ribicoff chaired this Committee and expressed 



1 The prepared statement of Mr. Denholm appears on page 105. 



60 

grave concerns about conflicts between civil service reform and re- 
vising the Hatch Act. 

At that time, the Comptroller General of the United States gave 
Senator Ribicoff a report detailing problems that they saw in con- 
flicts between civil service reform and the possibility of liberalizing 
the Hatch Act. Two items from that report I think deserve your 
particular attention. 

One, they say "Any safeguard established to protect Federal em- 
ployees from coercion by management should also include some 
form of protection from outside groups. These groups may be even 
more capable of systematic coercion than management." 

Second, the Comptroller General's report said, "The elimination 
of restrictions on political activity would very likely increase the 
potential for conflict of interest situations to develop. Problems of 
this type are not necessarily limited to the higher-grade positions 
having substantial input into a decision. Any position that has the 
responsibility for large Federal expenditures, even in small incre- 
ments, may be susceptible to misuse of their authority." 

There is no doubt in my mind that the "outside groups" referred 
to by the Comptroller General included labor organizations in Fed- 
eral and postal service. I take as further evidence of that comments 
in a piece called "The Hatch Act: The Civil Libertarian's Defense," 
by John Bolton, in which he says, "Indeed, the difference between 
coercion of an employee by a supervisor — the paradigm of 1939 — 
and coercion of an employee by a union, which may include super- 
visors — the paradigm of today — is that coercion by a union is far 
harder to resist. Moreover, it may well be that the unions are far 
more capable of engaging in the systematic solicitation and intimi- 
dation of Federal employees than a network of supervisors. Public 
employee unions were not of significant size when the Hatch Act 
was originally passed, but their advent has, if anything, only made 
the Hatch Act more important. Union protestations that their pres- 
ence renders supervisor coercion less likely, however accurate, still 
provides no answer to the question of what renders union coercion 
less likely." 

I would say all of the pressure for revising the Hatch Act is com- 
ing from Federal and postal unions, certainly the political clout be- 
hind that pressure, and I think you need to look very carefully at 
whether these unions represent the interests of Federal workers, 
postal workers, or even their own members. 

Please remember that under the Civil Service Reform Act, even 
though a union may "represent" lots of Federal employees, they 
have relatively few members. I know of one Federsd union that 
claims to represent more than 600,000 Federal workers and yet has 
less than 200,000 members who are active Federal employees. 

There is some question about how these unions find out how 
their members feel. The General Accounting Office, going back to 
that report I just referred to, said that when the American Postal 
Workers Union surveyed its members, or reported that a survey of 
its members showed that they were overwhelmingly in support of 
legislation, that the survey was conducted by union officials at 
union meetings, selected on a random basis. I don't think that that 
is something that you can say is a good way to survey your mem- 
bers. 



61 

I would also point out that back in the 93rd Congress, the rep- 
resentative of the National Federation of Federal Employees testi- 
fied against the bill, sajdng that a survey of his members had 
shown overwhelming opposition to the bill. In the very next Con- 
gress, the representative of the same union, a different person, tes- 
tified in favor the bill, sajdng that a survey of their members had 
shown overwhelming support for the bill. 

So did the opinion of that many people change so markedly in 
one year? I think not. I think that the union officials on one side 
or the other were representing their own interests and not the in- 
terests of the employees. 

There is some evidence, some more scientific evidence, of the 
opinion of Federal workers. The Merit Systems Protection Board 
did a survey in 1989 of Federal employees, a very broad survey, 
and I have included some remarks about that survey in another 
item which I am attaching to my testimony by reference, and I 
would like to focus on it. 

In 1988, the Merit Systems Protection Board did a survey of Fed- 
eral personnel specialists on the merit system in general, and in 
that survey there was a question about the impact of revising the 
Hatch Act on the merit system. Unfortunately, when the report of 
the survey to Congress was published, the result of that question 
was not published in the report. We found out about it only be- 
cause the question itself was published in the sample of the survey 
that was produced in the back of the report. We obtained from the 
Merit Systems Protection Board all of the information about the re- 
sponse to that question, and I think it is very important to you. 

The question was: "In your opinion, would modification of the 
Hatch Act to permit Federal employees great opportunities for po- 
litical activity affect the operation of the merit system in general?" 

The responses were limited to this: It would have a positive ef- 
fect on the work environment; it would have no effect on the work 
environment; it would have a negative effect on the work environ- 
ment; or I don't know. 

Eleven percent of Federal personnel specigilists said that it would 
have a positive effect on the work environment; 35.5 percent said 
that it would have a negative effect on the work environment. But 
I think there is more information underlying that that is important 
to you. When you look at the demographics of that response, of the 
Federal personnel specialists who were surveyed who had served 
more than 20 years, 44 percent saw a negative effect compared to 
7.8 percent who saw a positive effect. Of Federal personnel special- 
ists who were in the SES grades, 70 percent said that it would 
have a negative effect, compared to 3.5 percent who said that it 
would have a positive effect. 

I think it is obvious from the results of the survey that to the 
extent that people believed this would have an effect — obviously, 
there was that middle ground in the whole group that didn't see 
any effect one way or the other — but to the extent that they have 
an opinion on it, the opinion is overwhelmingly that this legislation 
that you have proposed would have a negative effect on the merit 
system. 

There were other questions in the demographics, such as wheth- 
er the people were male or female, or whether they lived in or out 



67-400 0-94-3 



62 

of the Washington area. I would note — and it might be more of in- 
terest to Senators from out and around — that within the Washing- 
ton area, the opinion that it would have a negative effect was far 
stronger than outside the Washington area. So a Senator from Ne- 
braska might say, "Well, gee whiz, I don't see this as a problem, 
and my people don't see this as a problem," without realizing that 
here at the heart of Federal employment, the experts on it, those 
who are responsible at the higher levels of Government, may see 
it as a much bigger problem. 

Another element in that survey which I think really deserves 
your attention — and these answers were published in the report to 
Congress — dealt with the present amount of political abuse, and I 
think this is a question that Senator Glenn had some concern 
about. The people were asked whether they had, within the last 12 
months, personally observed in their organization any of the follow- 
ing, and when it came to an employee being pressured to contrib- 
ute to a political campaign, 99.3 percent said no; when it came to 
an employee being pressured to participate in partisan political ac- 
tivity, 99.6 percent said no; an employee actively seeking partisan 
political office or raising funds on behalf of a partisan political can- 
didate, 98.1 percent said no; a career employee being pressured to 
resign, transfer, or accept assignment because of his or her political 
Eiffiliation, 98.1 percent said no; an appointment to the competitive 
service made as a result of political party affiliation, 92.8 percent 
said no. 

I think that's ample evidence that the Hatch Act as it is is doing 
a marvelous job of protecting the Federal civil service from being 
politicized. Certainly, there may be other ways to do that, but I 
think the present law as it is is shown in this to be serving this 
country very well. 

Let me get to the question of the opinion of Federal employees. 
The Merit Systems Protection Board did a survey in 1989. They 
surveyed 21,454 employees, received 15,939 replies — a very good 
response for such a survey. The question that was asked was, "Do 
you agree or disagree with the following statement: I would like to 
be able legally to be more active in partisan political activities?" 
And 12.9 percent, almost 13 percent, strongly agreed; almost 19 
percent agreed; the rest neither disagreed nor agreed nor disagreed 
nor strongly disagreed. 

Again, please look at the demographics of the response — and by 
the way, these demographics were never published, because I ob- 
tained them from the Merit Systems Protection Board in their com- 
puter data. The shift toward disagreement with the statement in- 
creases with grade seniority. In fact, for example, when you get up 
to Executive Service 1, 25 percent disagree and 26 percent strongly 
disagree, compared to 8.4 percent who strongly agree and 14.7 per- 
cent who agree. 

When you look at the age of the respondents, the shift toward 
disagreement increases with age, the point being that the longer a 
person is a Federal employee, the more senior they become, the 
more experienced they become with the system, the more they real- 
ize the value of the Hatch Act and do not feel that it is an unrea- 
sonable restriction on them. 



63 

I again go back to the wording of that question, which was, "I 
would Hke to be able legally to be more active in partisan political 
activities." There was a survey conducted by the Commission on 
Political Activity and Government Personnel in 1968 which rather 
closely mirrors that, but the wording of the question was different. 
The wording was, "Have you ever wanted to take part in particular 
kinds of political activity, but didn't because you were a Federal 
employee?" Seventy-one percent responded in the negative. I would 
suggest to you that the 71 percent who responded in the negative 
there is almost exactly the same percent of people who didn't either 
agree or strongly disagree with the prior statement. And therefore, 
there is a consistent level of Federal employee opinion over a long 
period of time. 

It must be noted, of course, that in 1968, postal workers were 
Federal employees, and by 1989, they were not, and therefore were 
in one survey but were not covered in the other. 

In 1988, the National Journal reported that a survey of Govern- 
ment executives were asked the following question: "Should the 
Hatch Act be amended to permit Federal workers to run for office 
and manage and raise money for campaigns on their own time?" 
And of 3,607 replies, 3,255 of which were from Federal Government 
employees, 60 percent answered no to the question — I think good 
evidence of the opinion of Federal employees. 

Mr. Chairman, it has been a long hearing. I again appreciate the 
opportunity to finally get some of this information on the record 
and our views. I would like to close off — there is so much I'd like 
to say to you — I would like to close off with a suggestion that comes 
from my last comment. 

The Hatch Act is a civil service protection law. It protects the 
civil service, and it protects the civil servant, and it protects the 
American people. When it was enacted, postal workers were Fed- 
eral civil servants. They are not now. My sense of it is, purely po- 
litically, that the pressure you are getting to change this, the real 
political clout behind trying to change this, is coming from the 
postal unions. 

If you want to just change the law, why not recognize what hap- 
pened in 1971 and say the postal workers aren't Federal employ- 
ees, and be done with it — and not screw up one of the best laws 
you've got? 

Thank you for your time. Of course, I will respond to questions. 

Chairman Glenn. Thank you very much. 

I would respond by sa3dng this isn't just to benefit postal work- 
ers. This is because there were inequities, we felt, in some of these 
3,000 differences that grew up through the years, most of which 
have been corrected, but not all of them, and we have discussed 
some of those here earlier this morning. But I would repeat again 
this is not repeal of the Hatch Act. It is reform. It is trying to cor- 
rect some of those inequities. 

Mr. Denholm, let me make sure we understand some of your fig- 
ures here — and we are late this morning, so we're going to have to 
move along, but I w£int to address a few inaccuracies as I see them 
in your statement. 

In your testimony, I believe you had a statement in there that 
the Senior Executive Association does not oppose — I say the Senior 



64 

Executive Association does not oppose S. 185. It has not taken a po- 
sition for or against the bill, and the same thing goes for the Amer- 
ican Bar Association. So your statement is wrong. 

Mr. Denholm. I apologize if that is inaccurate. This was put to- 
gether at the last minute from a great many sources. I would be 
happy to correct any inaccuracies. There are others that I have be- 
come aware of since it was submitted. I think they are minor, but 
I will correct them in writing. 

Chairman Glenn. OK. I entered a letter in the record earlier 
this morning from the SEA, correcting some of the mis- 
interpretations 

Mr. Denholm. They did oppose the legislation before, and I 
think where we came from was a survey of their members sajdng 
that their members were opposed to it. 

Chairman Glenn. Let me just say that I have never argued ei- 
ther that most Federal employees want to be more politically ac- 
tive; I think a lot of them welcome this kind of protection — but 
what about those who want to be and cannot? Should we be deny- 
ing them the right 

Mr. Denholm. Yes, definitely, sir. 

Chairman Glenn [continuing]. To do things that are just com- 
mon sense things? Would you prohibit the contribution of $1,000 to 
a Federal campaign? 

Mr. Denholm. I think you have a very interesting problem with 
this question of money and the solicitation of money and contribu- 
tions and the solicitation of contributions. 

Chairman Glenn. Now, we prohibit that. 

Mr. Denholm. The Federal Election Campaign Act doesn't make 
the money distinction that you are making in this law. You say this 
prohibits the solicitation of money. You know as a politician, sir, 
that there is much in politics that is not money, that is of great 
value. 

Chairman Glenn. Sure. 

Mr. Denholm. So what you are sajdng is that we can solicit this 
of great value, but we are going to prohibit the solicitation of 
money? 

Chairman Glenn. No; I'm asking you. I am pointing out the very 
discrepancy that you describe — a person can contribute $1,000 to a 
Federal candidate, but you are denying them the right to go out 
and say, "I can't contribute. I have had some medical bills and so 
on, and I can't hack that anymore — but I want to express my right 
to support a candidate just as much as the person who can write 
a check for $1,000. And I want to go down and" — I guess we 
overdid the stuffed envelope thing here this morning, but anyway — 
stuff envelopes or tack signs onto posts. What's wrong with that? 

Mr. Denholm. Well, you are trivializing this. Stuffing envelopes 
and wearing buttons and putting on bumper stickers is trivializing 
the issue when you are talking about the politicization of the bu- 
reaucracy. 

Chairman Glenn. It's not trivial in a campaign, Mr. Denholm. 
It is very important. 

Mr. Denholm. It is certainly trivial compared to the really im- 
portant tasks that are done in campaigns 



65 

Chairman Glenn. I repeat my question, then. If you are going 
to make a level pla3dng field, then, so everybody is treated equally, 
would you say that they cannot make a contribution to a cam- 
paign? 

Mr. Denholm. If you were going to make the level playing field, 
and you had to go in one direction or the other, I think you would 
be compelled by conscience to go against contributions. 

Chairman Glenn, Well, your conscience and mine go in a little 
different direction on that one. 

Let me say this. I just want to make very clear that I have never 
argued that most Federal employees want to be more politically ac- 
tive, but those who want to should certainly have that right. 

Let me just point out another inaccuracy in your statement here 
this morning. There is no study by the Merit Systems Protection 
Board that finds that 75 percent of Federal personnel specialists 
think that liberalizing the Hatch Act would have a negative effect 
on the merit system. In fact, I ask that a letter from the MSPB, 
clarifying the results of their survey, be inserted into the record, 
and I will quote in part from that letter. 

They say they are glad to reply to our request for information on 
this, and so on — and we'd be glad to give you a copy of this — and 
they list the same things that you list as the four ways the ques- 
tions were asked, but they certainly come up with some different 
totals than you came up with. As to the positive effect on the work 
environment, 12 percent; no effect on the work environment, 32 
percent; a negative effect on the work environment, 36 percent; 
don't know/no basis to judge, 21 percent. 

Now, you interpret that to mean that about 75 percent, I guess, 
say it would have a negative effect on the system. 

Mr. Denholm. My statement, Senator, and I will read it, is that 
75 percent of those who think it will have an effect think that that 
effect will be negative. If you take those who think it will have a 
negative effect and those who think it will have a positive effect, 
75 percent of those are negative. 

Chairman Glenn. Well, you're wrong. Let me tell you what they 
interpret their own survey to mean. You may put your own spin 
on it, Mr. Denholm, but here is what they say about it. "In inter- 
preting these results, one should note that the 21 percent respond- 
ing 'Don't know/No basis to judge' do not necessary equate to 'Have 
no opinion.' Therefore, they may not be considered as neutral. The 
responses of this one-fifth of the sample must be read at face 
value — they don't know what the effect would be, or they have no 
basis on which to offer an opinion." 

"As shown, therefore, under one-third of the respondents believe 
that Hatch Act reform of the kind described by the survey question 
would have no effect, either negative or positive, on the work envi- 
ronment, and slightly better than one in 10 believe that such 
change would have a positive effect. Similarly, slightly over one- 
third of the respondents believe that such chsinge would have a 
negative effect on the work environment." 

"As these results demonstrate, the Federal personnel community 
is widely divided on the issue of the Hatch Act." That is their inter- 
pretation. Now, you have put a different spin on their figures, but 
they say only about one-third think it is going to have a bad effect. 



66 

I would ask unanimous consent that this be entered in the 
record. ^ 

Chairman Glenn. I jdeld. I don't have any more questions. 

Senator RoTH. I have just one comment Eind question, Mr. Chair- 
man. 

As was indicated by your figures, 70 percent were not interested 
in being involved politically or changing the Hatch Act; 30 percent 
wanted to become active. So if you limited the question to that, 
then of course, why shouldn't the 30 percent have the opportunity? 
But that's only part of the picture. We are also talking about assur- 
ance that the laws are enforced and administered in a nonpartisan 
way. So it is not just a question of 30 percent wanting to be politi- 
cally active; there are these other factors to be weighed. Wouldn't 
you agree with that? 

Mr. Denholm. I certainly agree. I think even if 100 percent 
wanted to be politically active that the Hatch Act would still be a 
good law, and it would be a necessary law. In fact, perhaps it might 
be more necessary if 100 percent wanted to be politically active 
than only the 30. 

Senator Roth. I want to thank you for your very comprehensive 
statement and for your patience today. We appreciate it. 

Mr. Denholm. Thank you. 

Chairman Glenn. I ask unanimous consent that the record be 
kept open. Senator Pryor had some additional questions he wanted 
to submit, and we'd appreciate an early reply to those questions so 
we can include them as part of the record. 

Thank you. The Committee stands in recess subject to call of the 
Chair. 

[Whereupon, at 12:32 p.m., the Committee was adjourned.] 



' The MSPB letter appears on page 117. 



APPENDIX 



103d CONGRESS r^ 1 r^ P^ II 

1st Session 



S.185 



To amend title 5, United States Code, to restore to Federal civilian employees 
their right to participate voluntarily, as private citizens, in. the political 
processes of the Nation, to protect such emploj^ees from improper political 
solicitations, and for other purposes. 



IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES 

January 26 (legislative day, January 5), 1993 
Mr. Glenn (for himself, Mr. Pryor, Mr. Stevens, Mr. Lieberman, Mr. 
Levin, Mr. Akaka, Mr. Sarbanes, Mr. Conrad, Mr. Sasser, Mr. 
Leahy, and Mr. Dorgan) introduced the followng bill; which was read 
t^^^ce and referred to the Committee on Governmental Affairs 



A BILL 

To amend title 5, United States Code, to restore to Federal 
civilian employees their right to participate voluntarily, 
as private citizens, in the political processes of the Na- 
tion, to protect such employees from improper political 
solicitations, and for other purposes. 

1 Be it enacted by fJie Senate and House of Representa- 

2 tives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, 

3 That this Act may be cited as the "Hatch Act Reform 

4 Amendments of 1993". 

5 SEC. 2. POUTICAL ACTIYITIES. 

6 (a) Subchapter HI of chapter 73 of title 5, United 

7 States Code, is amended to read as follows: 

(67) 



68 



2 

1 "SUBCHAPTER III— POLITICAL ACTIVITIES 

2 **§ 7321. Political participation 

3 "It is the policy of the Congress that employees 

4 should be encouraged to exercise fully, freely, and without 

5 fear of penalty or reprisal, and to the extent not expressly 

6 prohibited by law, their right to participate or to refrain 

7 from participating in the political processes of the Nation. 

8 "§ 7322. Definitions 

9 "For the purpose of this subchapter — 

10 "(1) 'employee' means any individual, other 

1 1 than the President and the Vice President, employed 

12 or holding office in — 

13 "(A) an Executive agency other than the 

14 General Accounting Office; or 

15 "(B) a position ^vithin the competitive 

16 service which is not in an Executive agency; 

17 but does not include a member of the uniformed 

1 8 services; 

19 "(2) 'partisan political office' means any office 

20 for which any candidate is nominated or elected as 

21 representing a party any of whose candidates for 

22 Presidential elector received votes in the last preced- 

23 ing election at which Presidential electors were se- 

24 leeted, but shall exclude any office or position within 

25 a political party or affiliated organization; and 

•S 186 IS 



69 



3 

1 **(3) 'political contribution' — 

2 "(A) means any gift, subscription, loan, 

3 advance, or deposit of money or anything of 

4 value, made for any political purpose; 

5 "(B) includes any contract, promise, or 

6 agreement, express or implied, whether or not 

7 legally enforceable, to make a contribution for 

8 any political purpose; 

9 "(C) includes any payment by any person, 

10 other than a candidate or a political party or 

11 affiliated organization, of compensation for the 

12 personal services of another person which are 

13 rendered to any candidate or political party or 

14 affiliated organization \vithout charge for any 

15 political purpose; and 

16 "(D) includes the provision of personal 

17 services for any political purpose. 

18 "§ 7323. Political activity authorized; prohibitions 

19 "(a) Subject to the provisions of subsection (b), an 

20 employee may take an active part in political management 

21 or in political campaigns, except an employee may not — 

22 "(1) use his official authority or influence for 

23 the purpose of interfering Avith or affecting the re- 

24 suit of an election; 



•S 185 IS 



70 



4 

1 "(2) knowingly solicit, accept, or receive a polit- 

2 ical contribution from any person, unless such 

3 person is — 

4 "(A) a member of the same Federal labor 

5 organization as defined under section 7103(4) 

6 of this title or a Federal employee organization 

7 which as of the date of enactment of the Hatch 

8 Act Reform Amendments of 1993 had a 

9 multicandidate political committee (as defined 

10 under section 315(a)(4) of the Federal Election 

11 Campaign Act of 1971 (2 U.S.C. 441a(a)(4))); 

12 "(B) not a subordinate employee; and 

13 "(C) the solicitation is for a contribution 

14 to the multicandidate political committee (as 

15 defined under section 315(a)(4) of the Federal 

16 Election Campaign Act of 1971 (2 U.S.C. 

17 441a(a)(4))) of such Federal labor organization 

18 as defined under section 7103(4) of this title or 

19 a Federal emplo.yee organization which as of 

20 the date of the enactment of the Hatch Act Re- 

21 form Amendments of 1993 had a 

22 multicandidate political committee (as defined 

23 under section 315(a)(4) of the Federal Election 

24 Campaign Act of 1971 (2 U.S.C. 441a(a)(4))); 

25 or 

•S 18S IS 



71 



5 

1 "(3) run for the nomination or as a candidate 

2 for election to a partisan political office; or 

3 "(4) knowingly solicit or discourage the partici- 

4 pation in any political activity of any person who — 

5 "(A) has an application for any compensa- 

6 tion, gi-ant, contract, ruling, license, permit, or 

7 certificate pending before the employing office 

8 of such employee; or 

9 "(B) is the subject of or a participant in 

10 an ongoing audit, investigation, or enforcement 

1 1 action being carried out by the emplo.ying office 

12 of such employee. 

13 "(b)(1) An employee of the Federal Election Commis- 

14 sion (except one appointed by the President, by and with 

15 the advice and consent of the Senate), may not request 

16 or receive from, or give to, an employee, a Member of Con- 

17 gress, or an officer of a uniformed sei-vice a political 

18 contribution. 

19 "(2) No employee of the Federal Election Commis- 

20 sion (except one appointed by the President, by and with 

21 the advice and consent of the Senate), may take an active 

22 part in political management or political campaigns. 

23 "(3) For purposes of this subsection, the term 'active 

24 part in political management or in a political campaign' 

25 means those acts of political management or political cam- 

's 185 IS 



72 



6 

1 paigning which were prohibited for employees of the eom- 

2 petitive service before July 19, 1940, by determinations 

3 of the Civil Service Commission under the rules prescribed 

4 by the President. 

5 "§ 7324. Political activities on duty; prohibition 

6 "(a) An employee may not engage in political 

7 activity — 

8 "(1) while the emploj^ee is on duty; 

9 "(2) in any room or building occupied in the 

10 discharge of official duties by an individual employed 

11 or holding office in the Government of the United 

12 States or any agency or instrumentality thereof; 

13 "(3) while wearing a uniform or official insignia 

14 identifying the office or position of the employee; or 

15 "(4) using any vehicle owned or leased by the 

16 Government of the United States or any agency or 

17 instrumentality thereof. 

18 "(b)(1) An employee described in paragraph (2) of 

19 this subsection may engage in political activity otherwise 

20 prohibited by subsection (a) if the costs associated with 

21 that political activity are not paid for by money derived 

22 from the Treasury of the United States. 

23 "(2) Paragraph (1) applies to an employee — 



•S 186 IS 



73 

7 

1 "(A) the duties and responsibilities of whose po- 

2 sition continue outside normal duty hours and while 

3 away from the normal duty post; and 

4 "(B) who is— 

5 "(i) an employee paid from an appropria- 

6 tion for the Executive Office of the President; 

7 or 

8 "(ii) an employee appointed by the Presi- 

9 dent, by and with the advice and consent of the 

10 Senate, whose position is located within the 

11 United States, who determines policies to be 

12 pursued by the United States in relations with 

13 foreign powers or in the natiomvide administra- 

14 tion of Federal laws. 

15 **§7325. Political activity permitted; employees resid- 

16 ing in certain municipalities 

17 "The Office of Personnel Management may prescribe 

18 regulations permitting employees, \vithout regard to the 

19 prohibitions in paragraphs (2) and (3) of section 7323 of 

20 this title, to take an active part in political management 

21 and political campaigns involving the municipality or other 

22 political subdivision in which they reside, to the extent the 

23 Office considers it to be in their domestic interest, when — 

24 "(1) the municipality or political subdivision is 

25 in Maryland or Virginia and in the immediate vicin- 

•S 185 IS 



74 

8 

1 ity of the District of Columbia, or is a municipality 

2 in which the majority of voters are employed by the 

3 Government of the United States; and 

4 "(2) the Office determines that because of spe- 

5 cial or unusual circumstances which exist in the mu- 

6 nicipality or political subdivision it is in the domestic 

7 interest of the employees and individuals to permit 

8 that political participation. 

9 **§ 7326. Penalties 

10 "Any employee who has been determined by the Merit 

11 Systems Protection Board to have violated on two occa- 

12 sions any provision of section 7323 or 7324 of this title, 

13 shall upon such second determination by the Merit System 

14 Protection Board be removed from such employee's posi- 

15 tion, in which event that employee may not thereafter hold 

16 any position (other than an elected position) as an em- 

17 ployee (as defined in section 7322(1) of this title). Such 

18 removal shall not be effective until all available appeals 

19 are final.". 

20 (b)(1) Section 3302(2) of title 5, United States Code, 

21 is amended by striking out "7203, 7321, and 7322" and 

22 inserting in lieu thereof "and 7203". 

23 (2) The table of sections for subchapter III of chapter 

24 73 of title 5, United States Code, is amended to read as 

25 follows: 

•S IBS IS 



75 



9 

1 "SUBCHAPTER III— POLITICAL ACTIVITIES 

"7321. Political participation. 

"7322. Definitions. 

"7323. Political activity authorized; prohibitions. 

"7324. Political activities on duty; prohibition. 

"7325. Political activity permitted; employees residing in certain municipali- 
ties. 

"7326. Penalties.". 

2 SEC. 3. AMENDMENT TO CHAPTER 12 OF TITLE 5, UNITED 

3 STATES CODE. 

4 Section 1216(c) of title 5, United States Code, is 

5 amended to read as follows: 

6 "(c) If the Special Counsel receives an allegation con- 

7 cerning any matter under paragraph (1), (3), (4), or (5) 

8 of subsection (a), the Special Counsel may investigate and 

9 seek corrective action under section 1214 and disciplinary 

10 action under section 1215 in the same way as if a prohib- 

1 1 ited personnel practice were involved.". 

12 SEC. 4. AMENDMENTS TO TITLE 18. 

13 (a) Section 602 of title 18, United States Code, relat- 

14 ing to solicitation of political contributions, is amended — 

15 (1) by inserting "(a)" before "It"; 

16 (2) in paragraph (4) b}^ striking out all that fol- 

17 lows "Treasury of the United States" and inserting 

18 in lieu thereof a semicolon and "to knowingly solicit 

19 any contribution within the meaning of section 

20 301(8) of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 

21 1971 from any other such officer, employee, or per- 

22 son. Any person who violates this section shall be 

•S 18S IS 



76 

10 

1 fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 

2 3 years, or both."; and 

3 (3) by adding at the end thereof the following 

4 new subsection: 

5 "(b) The prohibition in subsection (a) shall not apply 

6 to any activity of an employee (as defined in section 

7 7322(1) of title 5) or any individual employed in or under 

8 the United States Postal Service or the Postal Rate Com- 

9 mission, unless that activity is prohibited by section 7323 

10 or 7324 of such title.". 

11 (b) Section 603 of title 18, United States Code, relat- 

12 ing to making political contributions, is amended by add- 

13 ing at the end thereof the folloAving new subsection: 

14 "(c) The prohibition in subsection (a) shall not apply 

15 to any activity of an employee (as defined in section 

16 7322(1) of title 5) or any individual employed in or under 

17 the United States Postal Service or the Postal Rate Com- 

18 mission, unless that activity is prohibited b}^ section 7323 

19 or 7324 of such title.". 

20 (c)(1) Chapter 29 of title 18, United States Code, 

21 relating to elections and political activities is amended by 

22 adding at the end thereof the folloAving new section: 

23 "§ 610. Coercion of political activity 

24 "It shall be unlawful for any person to intimidate, 

25 threaten, command, or coerce, or attempt to intimidate, 

•S 185 IS 



77 

11 

1 threaten, command, or coerce, any emploj'-ee of the Fed- 

2 eral Government as defined in section 7322(1) of title 5, 

3 United States Code, to engage in, or not to engage in, 

4 any poUtical activity, including, but not limited to, voting 

5 or refusing to vote for an}^ candidate or measure in any 

6 election, making or refusing to make anj^ political con- 

7 tribution, or working or refusing to work on behalf of any 

8 candidate. Any person who violates this section shall be 

9 fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned not more than 

10 three years, or both.". 

11 (2) The table of sections for chapter 29 of title 18, 

12 United States Code, is amended by adding at the end 

13 thereof the followng: 

"610. Coercion of political activity.". 

14 SEC. 5. AMENDMENTS TO THE VOTING RIGHTS ACT OF 1965. 

15 Section 6 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (42 

16 U.S.C. 1973d) is amended by striking out "the provisions 

17 of section 9 of the Act of August 2, 1939, as amended 

18 (5 U.S.C. 118i), prohibiting partisan political activity" 

19 and by inserting in lieu thereof "the provisions of sub- 

20 chapter III of chapter 73 of title 5, United States Code, 

21 relating to political activities". 



•S 185 IS 



78 



12 

1 SEC. 6. AMENDMENTS RELATING TO APPLICATION OF 

2 CHAPTER 15 OF TITLE 5, UNITED STATES 

3 CODE. 

4 (a) Section 1501(1) of title 5, United States Code, 

5 is amended by inserting ", the District of Columbia," after 

6 "State". 

7 (b) Section 675(e) of the Community Services Block 

8 Grant Act (42 U.S.C. 9904(e)) is repealed. 

9 SEC. 7. APPLICABILITY TO POSTAL EMPLOYEES. 

10 The amendments made by this Act, and any regula- 

1 1 tions thereunder, shall apply with respect to employees of 

12 the United States Postal Service and the Postal Rate 

13 Commission, pursuant to sections 410(b) and 3604(e) of 

14 title 39, United States Code. 

15 SEC. 8. EFFECTIVE DATE. 

16 (a) The amendments made by this Act shall take ef- 

17 feet 120 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, 

18 except that the authority to prescribe regulations granted 

19 under section 7325 of title 5, United States Code (as 

20 added by section 2 of this Act), shall take effect on the 

21 date of the enactment of this Act. 

22 (b) Any repeal or amendment made by this Act of 

23 any provision of law shall not release or extinguish any 

24 penalty, forfeiture, or liability incurred under that provi- 

25 sion, and that provision shall be treated as remaining 

26 in force for the purpose of sustaining any proper proceed- 

•S 185 IS 



79 



13 

1 ing or action for the enforcement of that penalty, for- 

2 feiture, or liabihty. 

3 (e) No provision of this Act shall affect any proceed- 

4 ings with respect to which the charges were filed on or 

5 before the effective date of the amendments made by this 

6 Act. Orders shall be issued in such proceedings and ap- 

7 peals shall be taken therefrom as if this Act had not been 

8 enacted. 

O 



•S 18S IS 



80 

Prepared Statement of Senator Lieberman 

Mr. Chairman, I commend you for holding an early hearing on this important sub- 
ject of reform of the Hatch Act. I am pleased to be an original cosponsor of S. 185, 
this year's bill finally to rationalize the Hatch Act and to restore political freedoms 
to our nation's Federal employees. And I am extremely pleased that the Administra- 
tion has seen fit to endorse this bill. That is a breath of fresh air and a sign of 
change. 

Mr. Chairman, I have made clear in the past, including in additional views I filed 
last year in the Committee's report, that I believe the Hatch Act as it currently 
stands in law to be unconstitutional. Its categorical ban on political activity and par- 
ticipation by Federal employees is not at all narrowly tailored to prevent the harms 
the Hatch Act sought to address. It is a sledgehammer approach to an area in which 
I believe the First Amendment requires a scalpel. The Dill you have proposed, Mr. 
Chairman, draws a much more acceptable balance. 

There are two areas, Mr. Chairman, in which I wish this bill went further. When 
the House of Representatives considered this legislation, it adopted an amendment 
proposed by my fi-iend Congresswoman Nancy Johnson. That amendment would 
permit Federal employees to run for local elective office, such as school boards and 
town councils, even if these contests are technically partisan races. I agree with 
Congresswoman Johnson that it is important to allow our Federal employees to be 
fully participatory members of their local communities. 

Mr. Chairman, I continue to remain concerned about the provisions of Chapter 
15 of Title 5 that restrict the rights of state or local employees whose positions are 
at least partly funded with Federal funds. One of these provisions prohibits a cov- 
ered state or local employee from running for elective office, except in elections in 
which no candidate stands as the candidate of a political party. The effect of this 
in Connecticut is to bar these employees from running for any local office, even 
where otherwise permitted by state law. 

Unfortunately for the State of Connecticut, it has pursued the enlightened ap- 
proach of permitting state employees to run for elective office, even in partisan elec- 
tions. Since this activity is permitted under state law, the state cannot remove an 
employee who seeks such office, even if that employee's position is partially financed 
witn Federal funds. Every year this means that the State, pursuant to Chapter 15, 
must forfeit twice the annual salary of the person who ran for office. 

This result is unfair to Connecticut. It is an unwarranted intrusion on Connecti- 
cut's management of its own affairs. And there is no basis for such a limitation. 
Other provisions of Chapter 15 clearly prohibit the covered state or local employee 
from using his or her official authority or influence to interfere with an election or 
nomination, and from directly or indirectly coercing or attempting to coerce other 
state or local employees into making any land of contribution, monetary or in-kind, 
to a political party, organization or candidate. 

Mr. Chairman, even though this bill does not go as far as I would like, it has my 
full support. Again, I commend you for holding this hearing, and I look forward to 
marking up this legislation at the earliest possible opportunity. 



Prepared Statement of Congresswoman Nancy L. Johnson 

Mr. Chairman: 

As a strong advocate for responsible Hatch reform, I urge members of the Senate 
Government Affairs Committee to support my proposal to allow Federal employees 
to participate and run in local elections, as I feel it will allow our constituents the 
political rights they deserve, without compromising the apolitical nature of our Fed- 
eral workforce. 

I commend the Chairman and Ranking Members of both the House and Senate 
Committees for their work on Hatch reform. Unfortunately, I fear that Congress 
may send the President the same Hatch reform bill we passed in the 101st Con- 
gress, to allow Federal employees to run for State Party Chairman and other par- 
tisan offices but not for local school board or First Selectman. 

Mr. Chairman, I would like to make two points. First, I never once had a Federal 
employee ask for the right to be deputy town party chairman, or even state party 
chairman, but I have had Federal employees implore me to let them run for the 
school board, the county council, or town selectman or selectwoman. Second, while 
intimidation is possible in state and Federal contests, it cannot be used to win local 
races. The vast majority of Federal employees work in cities, and live in suburbs 



81 

and small towns. Very few of the people they work with live in their towns so in- 
timidating them to vote won't be a factor. 

Mv proposal gives Federal employees what they want most— the right to rim for 
local office. Every group of Federal employees who has discussed this issue with me 
have stated that they want to be able to run for local offices, such as school board 
or town council. These are people who are dedicated to public service and want to 
serve their small town as an elected official. Responsible Hatch reform must allow 
these people to serve their local communities in this manner. This reform is appro- 
priate in an age when most Federal employees don't work in the same community 
where they reside, so the issue of intimidating coworkers into working or voting for 
them is moot. 

I recently wrote the Office of Special Counsel inquiring of its experience in enforc- 
ing Hatch regulations for Federal employees residing in certain partially exempted 
localities where they are allowed to run in partisan elections as independent can- 
didates. According to Ms. Kathleen Day Koch, Special Counsel, "we have not ob- 
served that exempted localities have presented a greater problem than non-exempt 
localities with respect to Hatch Act violations." 'This is very important knowledge 
to have as we seek to write responsible reform legislation. 

The original Hatch Act's aim, a Federal civil service independent of Federal elec- 
toral politics, is as necessary and desirable today as it was 50 years ago. But we 
need not sacrifice the legitimate desire of Federal workers to pursue local civic and 
political interests that do not conflict or interfere with their duties. 

Once President Clinton signs a Hatch reform bill into law, we may not visit the 
issue of Hatch reform again for many years. The Johnson proposal makes sense and 
will promote responsible Hatch reform. I ask you to join me in supporting this pro- 
posal. Thank you. 



U.S. Office of Special Counsel 

Washington, DC 

April 9, 1993 
Dear Congresswoman Johnson: 

I am writing in response to your request of March 24 regarding the Office Of Spe- 
cial Counsel's (OSC) experience with exempted localities under the Hatch Act. 

Under current law. Federal employees are permitted to be candidates for public 
elective office in any non-partisan election, i.e., an election in which no candidate 
represents, for example, the Republican or Democratic party. In addition, current 
law provides that Federal employees who reside in certain partially exempted local- 
ities may be candidates for any local partisan public office within the exempted lo- 
cality, provided that they run as independent candidates. Under H.R. 20, as amend- 
ed on the House floor, Federal employees would be permitted to be partisan or non- 
partisan candidates in any local election. The prohibition on being a candidate in 
partisan elections for statewide and Federal office would be maintained as under 
current law. 

You have asked for historical information concerning OSC's enforcement efforts 
relating to the exempted localities. There have been exempted localities since the 
Hatch Act was passed in 1939. In fact, such exemptions haa existed for many years 
prior to 1939 under regulations of the Civil Service Commission. In our experience 
interpreting the Hatch Act since 1979, OSC has reviewed approximately 96 matters 
concerning the activities of employees residing in exempted localities. Generally 
speaking, we have not observed that exempted localities nave presented a greater 
problem than non-exempted localities with respect to Hatch Act violations. These 96 
matters actually represent a very small percentage of OSC's total effort in enforcing 
the Hatch Act over the past thirteen years. 

Of those cases dealing directly with local partisan elections, a typical complaint 
might allege that a Federal employee had violated the Act by being an independent 
candidate in a local partisan election. Such a situation would not constitute a viola- 
tion of the Hatch Act. On the other hand, another complaint might allege that, al- 
though an employee purported to be an independent candidate, he or she had actu- 
ally transformed the nature of the candidacy into one which was partisan, for exam- 
ple by affiliating with the efforts of a partisan political party. A case involving this 
situation is currently pending before the Merit Systems Protection Board. 

In a more general vein, it may be advisable to review potential constitutional 
problems with candidacy limitations. The current law, with its proscription on can- 
didacy in any partisan election, has been upheld by the Supreme Court as a justifi- 
able restriction on the exercise of First Amendment rights. However, H.R. 20 pro- 
fesses the policy that "employees should be encouraged to exercise fully, freely, and 
without fear of penalty or reprisal, and to the extent not expressly prohibited by 



82 

law, their right to participate or to refrain from participating in the poUtical proc- 
esses of our Nation. ' In Ught of this statement, it is not clear what the policy consid- 
erations are which justify any selective limitations on that right, incluaing a limita- 
tion on partisan candidacy which only applies to statewide and Federal elections. 
Absent an explanation of these policy considerations, enforcement of the provision 
could be subject to a challenge that it infringes on a constitutional right without 
sufficient justification. 

I hope this information is useful in your consideration of amendments to the 
Hatch Act. Of course, this office wiU continue to enforce the Hatch Act in whatever 
amended form the Congress deems appropriate. Please do not hesitate to contact me 
if I can be of further assistance. 
Sincerely, 

Kathleen Day Koch 



Prepared Statement of Alfred K. Whitehead 

Mr. Chairman, my name is Alfred K. Whitehead and I am the General President 
of the International Association of Fire Fighters. I appear before you today on behalf 
of our union's nearly 200,000 members to offer our strong and unequivocal support 
for S.185, the Hatch Act Reform Amendments of 1993. 

Mr. Chairman, the job of a fire fighter is not an easy one; surveys consistently 
show it to be the Nation's most dangerous profession. Every time the alarm sounds, 
fire fighters know that they may be required to put their life on the line to protect 
the safety and propertv of our fellow citizens. Fire fighters in the Federal service 
play an especially vital role. Most of our Federal employee members protect either 
military installations or VA medical facilities. The very thought of a fire at a nu- 
clear missile site or at a VA hospital, where many of our nation's wartime heroes 
can be found, is chilling. 

Federal fire fighters carry out this noble and dangerous mission with distinction, 
and they ask for little in return. The very least we owe these heroes is the right 
to fully participate in the American political process. A cruel irony of the Hatch Act 
is that it takes away rights from those who give so much. The time is long overdue 
to reform the Hatch Act, and make Federal workers full-fledged American citizens. 

To fully appreciate why the Hatch Act must be reformed, it is necessary to recall 
its original intent. The Hatch Act was adopted in 1939 in an effort to protect Fed- 
eral employees from coercion. At the time, drastic measures were needed to restrict 
political interference in the Federal work place. 

Members of Congress felt that only an outright ban on political activity could stop 
political appointees from compelling workers to perform political duties. 

Much has changed in the last fifty years, and the same law which liberated Fed- 
eral servants then, serves to confine tnem today. The threat of political coercion has 
been largely eliminated by several new laws which protect the rights of workers and 
deter abuse of public office. For example, the Merit Systems Protection Board and 
the Office of Special Coimsel offer Federal workers protections that were not avail- 
able in the 1930s. Moreover, the U.S. Criminal Code (18 USC) contains several new 
prohibitions on political coercion punishable by fine and imprisonment. 

Even more importantly, the legislation pending before this Committee builds in 
important new safeguards to ensure that tne sort of political coercion that gave rise 
to the Hatch Act wUl never reappear. That is why Federal workers who sought the 
protection afforded by the Hatch Act in the 1930s, today are advocating its reform. 

Mr. Chairman, I find it significant that the opposition to Hatch Act reform comes 
not from workers concerned about harassment, but from special interest groups and 
some politicians who disagree with Federal employees on substantive issues. It is 
unconscionable that we would disenfranchise millions of Americans because of their 
views on policy matters, yet that is precisely what Congress would be doing if it 
fails to enact this proposal. 

Mr. Chairman, I would be remiss if I did not take a moment to recognize your 
leadership on this issue. During the past decade, in the face of hostile Administra- 
tions, you championed the cause of Federal workers and sought to extend to them 
the basic political rights enjoyed by every other American. For this we are indebted 
to you. 

In closing, I wish to note that the legislative history of this issue would appear 
to indicate that enactment is finally on the horizon. The House passed the legisla- 
tion earlier this year, and an overwhelming majority of the Senate is on record in 
support of the proposal. The one obstacle that has prevented adoption of Hatch Act 



83 

reform in the past — opposition from the White House — is no longer a factor as Presi- 
dent Chnton has ah-eady indicated his intent to sign the bill into law. 

In light of these factors, I wish to urge this Committee to quickly report the bill 
to the Senate for consideration. After years of debate, there is Uttle left to discuss 
and no valid reason for further delay. 

Mr. Chairman, I thank you for this opportunity to present our views, and would 
be happy to answer any questions you may have. 



Prepared Statement of The National Association of Government Employees, 

AFL-CIO 

Introduction 

The National Association of Government Employees (NAGE) is an affiliate of the 
Service Employees International Union, the fourth largest union in the AFL-CIO. 
NAGE represents more than 200,000 civilian Federal employees all across the coun- 
try and, on their behalf, we welcome this opportunity to appear before the Senate 
Governmental Affairs Committee to present our views on S. 185, a measure in- 
tended to achieve long overdue reform to the Hatch Act. With the overwhelming 333 
to 86 vote in the House of Representatives on March 4, 1993, we are one step closer 
to enacting this legislation. 

NAGE is pleased to present testimony evincing our strong public support for S. 
185, the Hatch Act Reform Amendments of 1993. At the outset, we would like to 
note our deep appreciation of the continuing efforts of Chairman John Glenn in in- 
troducing this bill and in focusing a spotlight on the need to reform a pernicious 
system that effectively denies millions of Americans their constitutional rights to 
fully participate in our national political process. 

Background 

The legislation that bears the name of former Senator Carl Hatch was originally 
enacted at a time when the nature of the Federal service was significantly different 
from today. The stated intent of the 1939 Hatch Act was to correct alleged abuses 
of the merit system and to protect Federal employees from political coercion and 
forced political alliance. At the time of its enactment, many observers believed that 
the Hatch Act was a blessing for the Federal employee. It was widely accepted that 
the legislation freed the individual employee from any fear of coercion or intimida- 
tion by government officials, and provided enhanced job security. 

The intent to protect employees from such abuse or intimidation by their super- 
visors was, and remains, appropriate and welcome. However, the protections ac- 
corded by the Hatch Act do not justify the pernicious violations of First Amendment 
rights arising from the overly broad and vague language of the statute. Today, the 
political activity restrictions embodied in the Act represent an outmoded, overly 
broad, and thoroughly confusing collection of more than 3,000 administrative deter- 
minations and rules that, in fact, work to coerce Federal employees from participat- 
ing in many poUtical activities, including some currently permissible under the Act. 
Further, the vagueness of the statute has opened the door to vindictive and selective 
enforcement of the Act. 

The Hatch Act is Outdated Legislation 

That the time for Hatch Act reform has arrived appears beyond dispute. The need 
for reform becomes abundantly clear when one considers the many changes that 
have occurred within the Federal service since 1939. In 1939, less than 32 percent 
of the Federal work force was under the classified merit system. Today, some 80 
percent of the work force is under the merit system and the protections that system 
affords. 

In 1939, widespread abuses of political manipulation occurred. Today, such abuses 
are not unchecked by the National media, worker organizations, and Congressional 
investigative staff". Since 1939, new codes for employee ethics have been developed, 
and collective bargaining, grievance procedures and other employee protections have 
become well established within the Federal workforce. Further, the Civil Service Re- 
form Act of 1978 provided Federal employees with extensive additional protections. 

While the Hatch Act was originally intended to insulate employees from coercion, 
it has become a direct infringement upon the Constitutional rights of the very per- 
sons it was designed to protect. Further, by the very vagueness of its language, the 
Hatch Act has forced large numbers of Federal employees into abandoning currently 
lawful participation in the political process. 



84 

Certainly, neither Federal employees nor Congress consider Hatch Act reform a 
new issue. In both the 100th and the lOlst Congresses, Congress conducted exten- 
sive hearings on Hatch Act reform. In the 101st Congress, both the House and the 
Senate overwhelmingly passed H.R. 20 and S. 135 with strong bipartisan support. 
President Bush vetoed tne measure and while the House overwhelmingly overrode 
the veto, the Senate failed to override his veto by only two votes. 

The Hatch Act's Restraint on Federal Employee's Participation 
in the Political Process Hurts the Country 

With the 1992 election came a mandate for change in our government. Those who 
are currently working within the government and face the frustrations of the exist- 
ing problems on a day-to-day basis are uniquely qualified to come up with sugges- 
tions for changes and improvements to our government. Nurses, Nurses' Assistants, 
and other VA personnel understand the intricacies of many problems with health 
care in America and can offer valuable insights. The DOD Police Officers and Fed- 
eral Protection Officers are well positioned to propose strategies for the war against 
crime and drugs. The civilian employees of the Defense Department are best situ- 
ated to voice concerns and make recommendations about plans for conversion of 
military bases to civilian uses. Federal employees, because of their working knowl- 
edge of government programs, have a unique contribution to make to improving the 
quality of America's political debate that is currently stifled by the Hatch Act. By 
restraining Federal employee's participation in political processes, the Hatch Act 
bridles those who have much to contribute to bringing about positive changes to our 
government. 

The Hatch Act Infringes on First Amendment Rights 

The First Amendment to the Constitution guarantees to all Americans the right 
to participate in the political process and to influence the formation of government 
in accordance with democratic ideals. The Hatch Act imposes political restrictions 
of Federal employees by preventing Federal workers from running for public or 
party office at any level and from participating in any partisan political campaigns, 
either as volunteers or paid employees. In so doing, the Hatch Act denies this fun- 
damental right to millions of American citizens on the sole basis that they have se- 
lected careers in the Federal service. 

The Office of Special Counsel enforces the current law through a confusing collec- 
tion of 3,000 regulatory rulings. These complex rulings allow Federal and postal em- 
ployees to speak publicly on political subjects, but not at political gatherings; they 
may attend political conventions, but not serve as delegates; they may sign nominat- 
ing petitions, but not circulate them; they can place bumper stickers on their cars, 
but cannot give bumper stickers to their friends. Because the law contains confusing 
inconsistencies, it is often over-enforced, resulting in a chilling effect which discour- 
ages even the limited participation now allowed under law. 

The Federal workforce is hardworking and dedicated, and NAGE is proud to rep- 
resent a substantial portion of them. The Hatch Act is premised upon the apparent 
assumption that the average Federal employee is inherently corrupt, or inherently 
corruptible. NAGE steadfastly rejects such an assumption. The Hatch Act, seem- 
ingly enacted under this unfair view of the Federal service, curtails the Constitu- 
tional rights of almost 3 million Americans. S. 185 would restore these rights by 
permitting Federal employee involvement in political activities, thus contributing to 
the health and vitality of the democratic process. 

S.185 Would Restore Constitutional Rights While Continuing 
to Protect Federal Employees from Political Coercion 

It should be noted that S. 185 would not only free Federal employees to partici- 
pate fully in the political process, it would also provide strong, effective mechanisms 
to protect the exercise, or non-exercise, of those political rights. In this regard, S. 
185 represents greater security against coercion for Federal workers than the 
present legislation provides. By its terms, S. 185 prohibits Federal Government offi- 
cials from using their authority to influence, intimidate or otherwise interfere with 
the rights of their subordinates. To the extent that such protections are required, 
S. 185 offers considerably more effective protection for Feaeral employees than the 
Hatch act. 

S. 185 would allow voluntary, off-duty activities of a partisan nature so long as 
such activities do not disrupt the impartial administration of the government. Fur- 
ther, under S. 185, Federal employees could run for non-partisan office, on their own 
time and in a requested leave status. Clearly, the bill's provisions cannot reasonably 
be considered a threat to our system of government, or to the job security of any 
individual employee. 



85 

S. 185 will erase the disturbing "chilling" effect created by the vague and impre- 
cise language of the Hatch Act on otherwise lawful political activities by Federal 
employees. S. 185 clearly enunciates the acceptable types of Federal employee con- 
duct and those which may disrupt or interfere with the efficiency and eflFectiveness 
of government operations. The latter remain unlawful under the language of S. 185. 
As a result of the clarifications of S. 185, Federal employees would no longer have 
to forego their rights to participate in the democratic process out of ignorance or 
confusion over the current law's application. S. 185 represents a dramatic improve- 
ment in clarity and precision. 

It is because S. 185 will so successfully protect the Federal employee from im- 
proper pressures while allowing for full freedom of political expression that NAGE 
and its membership endorse this bill so wholeheartedly. 

Conclusion 

S. 185 recognizes and protects the unquestioned need for a fair, impartial Federal 
workforce. At the same time, S. 185 remedies the weaknesses and inequities of the 
present law. In this manner, S. 185 balances the dual interests of sound, fair gov- 
ernment, and protection of fundamental Constitutional rights and values. 

NAGE applauds the Chair and other Members of the Committee for taking this 
important step in restoring to Federal employees their full rights as citizens. NAGE 
urges that S. 185 be swiftly approved by the Committee on Governmental Affairs, 
the U.S. Senate, and the House of Representatives, and signed into law by President 
Clinton. In this manner. Federal employees can regain their constitutionally pro- 
tected rights to participate in our political democracy. Once again, Mr. Chairman, 
we thank you for the opportunity to appear and present our views. 



American Federation of State, County and 

Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO 

Washington, DC 

April 29, 1993 

On behalf of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employ- 
ees (AFSCME), which represents 1.3 million federal, state, county and local govern- 
ment employees across the nation, we want to express our strong support of S. 185, 
Hatch Act Reform. The legislation will be the subject of hearings before the Govern- 
mental Affairs Committee this week. We request that this letter be included as part 
of the hearing record. 

Our union has a unique perspective on the issue of political restrictions on gov- 
ernment employees. Given our large membership and the broad range of govern- 
ments for which our members work, we have a great deal of experience in protecting 
the rights and representing the interests of public employees in jurisdictions that 
expressly restrict the political activities of their employees and those that allow vir- 
tually complete political freedom. 

Our experience in these different states leads us to support S. 185. This important 
legislation would remove most restrictions on political activities of federal employees 
while providing them with greater protection against coercion. 

Restricting tne political rights of^ public employees does not prevent political coer- 
cion or establish the neutral administration of government. Too often, these political 
restrictions are selectively enforced and arbitrarily used to harass public employees. 

The First Amendment right of expressing one's point of view and organizing with 
others on behalf of an idea is fundamental to our form of self-governance. Without 
these guarantees, our democracy would be an empty shell. Given the importance of 
these rights, they should not be infringed upon, unless there are compellmg reasons 
to do so. 

We would like to point out that H.R. 20, the Hatch Act Reform bill, as passed 
by the House of Representatives, would allow federal employees to run for elective 
public office, except for federal or state-wide offices. However, the provisions of the 
original Hatch Act which describe those activities which are prohibited to state and 
local government employees bar those employees from being a candidate for any 
elective office. It seems incongruous that the federal government would apply great- 
er restrictions to the political activities of state and local government employees 
than it does to employees of the federal government when the only basis for regulat- 
ing the activities of those state and local government employees is that they are em- 
ployed in positions which are funded in part with federal money. We continue to 



86 

believe that state and local government employees should be allowed the same free- 
dom as federal employees in nmning for elective office. 

We urge the Governmental Affairs Committee to remove the current Hatch Act 
restrictions and to permit governmental employees to fully enjoy their First Amend- 
ment rights and participate to the extent of their choosing in our democratic proc- 
ess. By so doing, they can join in molding the future course of our nation as full 
citizens. 
We urge the Committee to expeditiously approve S. 185. 
Sincerely, 

Gerald W McEntee 
International President 
William Lucy 
International Secretary -Treasurer 



Prepared Statement of John N. Sturdivant 

Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee: My name is John N. Sturdivant. 
I am President of the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, 
which represents over 700,000 active and retired government workers across the 
country. With this statement, we wish to indicate our continued support for reform 
of the Hatch Act and to urge, in the strongest possible terms, passage of legislation 
to achieve this long sought goal. 

The Congressional sponsors of Hatch Act reform are convincing evidence of a truly 
bipartisan effort. Organizational supporters are as diverse as their memberships: 
Federal employee unions, postal unions, professional organizations, management as- 
sociations, etc. Public employee supporters are as diverse as this nation's citizenry 
and include both rank-and-file and management employees, professionals, clerical, 
and blue collar workers, and RepubUcans, Democrats and independents. But, what 
is common to most public employees who advocate Hatch Act reform is that they 
almost universally espouse measures which work toward preserving a politically 
neutral civil service as well as towards eUminating patronage. And, they clearly un- 
derstand that Hatch Act reform will not detract from this goal. 

The Hatch Act, passed in 1939, was intended to insure that the civil service would 
be politically neutral and the spoils system would be eliminated. Since the passage 
of the Hatch Act, however, two very significant things have occurred. First, the very 
issues which became motivating factors for passage of the Hatch Act in the first 
place, are now embodied in other statutes. These will remain in effect if Hatch Act 
reform is achieved. They include a multitude of statutory provisions, many criminal, 
which insure the neutrality of the civil service and mandate that personnel practices 
be based on merit rather than on a patronage basis. (Attached is a list of some of 
those statutes and statutory provisions.) Hence, today's need for Hatch Act type re- 
strictions should be stated in terms of those specific issues which are not covered 
in other statutes. The Hatch Act reform measures now pending achieve this. 

Second, the over 3,000 Hatch Act decisions, many of which are not formally pub- 
lished, are indicative of the Act's ambiguity and therefore, of how employees are 
chilled in the exercise of the political rights they now have. This is patently unfair 
to Federal employees. They deserve to have the cloud of uncertainty and ambiguity, 
inherent in the current statutory provisions and administrative rulings, removed. 
The Hatch Act reform measures now pending will accomplish this. 

For these reasons, no valid arguments can be made against Hatch Act reform. 
Further, for these same reasons, 41 of the 50 states have now enacted measures 
permitting broader political freedoms for their state and local public employees than 
what is permitted Federal and postal employees. Contrary to arguments against 
Hatch Act reform, the 41 states which permit public employees to participate mean- 
ingfully in partisan politics provide testimonials to the fact that such reform has not 
in any way impinged upon the integrity of the states' politically neutral civil serv- 
ices. 

S. 185, as well as H.R. 20, the House version of Hatch Act reform, amends or re- 
forms the Hatch Act. It does not repeal it. It simply gives Federal employees the 
option of becoming more politically active if they so choose and strikes a balance 
between the constitutional rights of Federal employees and the need of government 
to maintain an unbiased civil service. Both measures not only strengthen many of 



87 

the existing provisions of the law but clarify them so that all employees know pre- 
cisely what activity is permissible. In some instances, the proposals are more strin- 
gent than current law. 

The language of the current Hatch Act provides that employees "may not use 
[their] official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with or affecting 
the result of an election; or take an active part in political management or in the 
political campaigns" (5 U.S.C. § 7324). It also provides that an employee "retains the 
right to vote as he chooses and to express his opinion on political subjects and can- 
didates". This has led to confusion because, in some instances, it has been unclear 
how one can express his opinion on a candidate without being said to have been 
taking "an active part in a political campaign". 

S. 185 specifically continues the prohibition against employees' using their official 
authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with or affecting the result of 
an election. It also would reduce the confusion over permissible activities by clearly 
providing that: 

Federal and postal employees will not engage in political activity while on duty, 
in any building where the business of the government is being conducted, while 
wearing a uniform or official insignia identifying them as a public employee, or 
while using a government vehicle. 

Employees will not be permitted to run for partisan political office at any level. 
Employees will not be allowed to solicit, accept or receive political contributions 
from the general public, a superior, or in a government building. 

Under S. 185, the current penalties of dismissal from emplo)Tnent or at a mini- 
mum, suspension of no less than 30 days, for Hatch Act violations would be 
changed. An employee who has been determined by the Merit Systems Protection 
Board to have violated the Act on two occasions woiild be removed. In addition, em- 
ployees will continue to remain subject to the fines and Jail sentences of up to 3 
years for certain violations of Federal criminal statutes mcluding the prohibition 
against soliciting contributions. 

When the Hatch Act was passed 50 years ago, its provisions were applicable to 
employees in the competitive service. At that time, this meant the restrictions were 
applied to approximately 10 percent of the workforce. Current Hatch Act provisions 
cover all employees in executive agencies and the postal service as well as employ- 
ees of the D.C. Government. However, the Hatch Act does not cover employees paid 
from the appropriation for the office of the President, the head or assistant head 
of an executive or military department or employees appointed by the President by 
and with the advice and consent of the Senate. It is easy to see how these exemp- 
tions could create an opportunity for political pressure to be brought to bear on sub- 
ordinates. The reform measures would be applicable to all employees in the postal 
service or in an executive agency. The only exceptions are the President and the 
Vice President and members of the uniformed services. Thus, it severely curtails the 
number of executive branch employees who are exempt fi-om Hatch Act prohibitions 
and who could bring political pressure to bear on their subordinates. 

The whole context in which the government now operates has changed since 1939 
because of enactment of various statutes. As mentioned above, these statutes protect 
employees from many of the very "evils" that were motivating factors behind enact- 
ment of the original Hatch Act. Because these statutes would remain in effect if the 
reform measures are enacted, in reality, reform is really a clarifying measure. It is 
sought partly because it would make clear exactly what political activities employ- 
ees may or may not engage in. 

The right of American citizens to participate freely in this nation's political proc- 
ess falls within the realm of the First Amendment rights guaranteed by the Con- 
stitution of the United States. However, such rights are not absolute. They may be 
limited or restricted when there is a compelling or overriding reason to do so. The 
government's need to insure that its business is efficiently and neutrally conducted 
is the broad basis upon which the Supreme Court has determined that the limited 
restriction of public employees' rights to be politically active is constitutional. How- 
ever, constitutionality rests upon a clear showing by the government of a need for 
restriction. Once the need is expressed, then such restriction must be clearly defined 
and narrowed in order that it only proscribes that activity which would impinge 
upon the basis for the Government's articulated, compelling need. 

The need to restrict the political activities of employees is met by a balancing 
test — the needs of the government versus the rights of employees. Those who pres- 
ently oppose reform have failed to balance the scale with their arguments. For ex- 
ample, opponents say that reform will lead to politicization of the workforce but 
they fail to articulate clearly how this will occur. Opponents suggest that reform will 



88 

lead to a return of the spoils system but fail to provide any specifics on why they 
believe this would be the result. Opponents of reform argue that the measure will 
pave the way for coercion, which tney specify as being "subtle coercion", but give 
no examples of how this could occur. 

Mr. Chairman, government employees are dedicated individuals who are fully 
aware of the small role each of them plays in providing vital services to the Amer- 
ican taxpayer. They live in every city and town in this country, and rather than 
being a uniform group who think with one mind, they are as diverse as this nation's 
population and a reflection of the communities in which they live. 

The idea that these three million citizens would set aside their diverse back- 
grounds and strong feelings about their country to become a monolithic, unthinking 
voting block is absurd. Like their jobs, government employees take seriously their 
duties as citizens. I am certain they thoughtfully consider organizational endorse- 
ments, such as those made by the AFL-CIO or the National Rifle Association, but 
like other good citizens, realize such endorsements are only one piece of information 
about a candidate to be weighed along with information provided by the candidates 
themselves, the National and local media, family and friends. 

Further, because they reflect the diversity of American society, there is no evi- 
dence to suggest this group of individuals would be any more interested in partici- 
pating in the political process than the average citizen. In any community there are 
a number of people who keep up with civic affairs, a smaller number who actually 
vote on election day, and a much smaller number who find the time to become in- 
volved in campaigns. Government workers, who have the same financial and time 
constraints imposed by raising families, caring for elderly relatives, and other cir- 
cumstances, would be no different. 

The ultimate goal sought by AFGE and the many others who support reform is 
to permit public employees to participate in partisan political activities as fully and 
freely as is possible while still maintaining the integrity of a competitive civil serv- 
ice, based on merit principles, where the government's business can be efficiently 
and effectively carried on free from political influence. The bipartisan proponents of 
Hatch Act reform have seriously addressed each and every specific concern raised 
about Hatch Act reform. 

In closing. Federal employees have been disadvantaged, unduly restricted, chilled 
in the exercise of their first amendment rights, subjected to an unclear statute, sub- 
jected to ambiguous rulings, and treated as second class citizens for far too long. 
AFGE seeks Hatch Act reform for the purpose of striking a balance between the 
constitutional rights of employees and the need of the government to maintain an 
unbiased civil service, free from political coercion and which is based on merit prin- 
ciples rather than on a spoils system. We do not seek reform for any other reasons 
wnatsoever. We have no ulterior motives. The measure would not cost any money 
nor add to the deficit. Hatch Act reform is neither a Democratic nor a Republican 
issue; it is an issue of political democracy and individual freedom. It is simply fair, 
equitable and good public policy — a measure which we believe should become an en- 
titlement for public employees. 

We appreciate this opportunity to express our views on Hatch Act reform and we 
respectmlly urge the Senate to act swiftly and adopt S. 185. 

STATUTES AND STATUTORY PROVISIONS WHICH ARE INTENDED TO 
INSURE A POLITICALLY NEUTRAL CIVIL SERVICE 

The following statutes, enacted after passage of the Hatch Act in 1939, serve a 
useful purpose in preserving the neutrality of the workforce and negating practices 
relating to the spoils system: 

Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, P.L. 95-^54, 92 Stat.lll. 

Chapter 23 — Merit System Principles 

5 U.S.C. § 2301(b)(1) Recruitment should be from qualified individuals 
from appropriate sources in an endeavor to achieve a work force froni all 
segments or society, and selection and advancement should be determined 
solely on the basis of relative ability, knowledge, and skills, after fair and 
open competition which assures that all receive equal opportunity. 

5 U.S.C. § 2301(b)(2) All employees and applicants for employment should 
receive fair and equitable treatment in all aspects of personnel manage- 
ment without regard to political affiliation. . . 

5 U.S.C. § 2302(b)(1) Any employee who has authority to take, direct oth- 
ers to take, recommend, or approve any personnel action, shall not, with 



89 

respect to such authority discriminate for or against any employee or appli- 
cant for emplo3Tnent 

(E) on the basis of marital status or political affiliation, as prohibited 
under any law, rule, or regulation. . . 

(3) coerce the political activity of any person (including the providing of any 
political contribution or service), or take any action against any employee 
or applicant for employment as a reprisal for the refusal of any person to 
engage in such political activity. 

Federal Criminal Code provisions— 18 U.S.C. §§ 594, 595, 597, 598-607. 

18 U.S.C. §594 prohibits the attempt or use of intimidation, threat, or coer- 
cion for the purpose of interfering with another's right to vote. A person in 
violation of this section shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned 
not more than 1 year, or both. 

18 U.S.C. §595 prohibits any person employed by the Federal Government 
in an administrative capacity from using his official authority for the pur- 
pose of interfering with, or affecting, the nomination or election of certain 
candidates for national office. Violators are subject to a fine of not more 
than $1,000 or 1 year in prison, or both. 

18 U.S.C. § 597 prohibits the making, offering, solicitation, acceptance or re- 
ceipt of expenditures in consideration for one's vote or the withholding 
thereof Violation of this section carries a fine of not more than $1,000 or 
maximum imprisonment of 1 year, or both. If the violation is willful, a fine 
of not more tnan $10,000 and imprisonment of not more than 2 years, or 
both, shall be assessed. 

18 U.S.C. §598 prohibits the use of congressional appropriations for work 
relief, or the exercise of authority conferred by an appropriations act, for 
the purpose of interfering with an individual's right to vote. Violation of 
this section warrants a fine of not more than $1,000 or imprisonment for 
not more than 1 year, or both. 

18 U.S.C. § 599 prohibits a candidate from the direct or indirect promise or 
pledge, or the use of his influence, of the appointment of any person for the 
purpose of procuring support for his candidacy. Violators shall be fined not 
more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than one year, or both. Willful 
violation carries a maximum fine of $10,000 or 2 years in prison, or both. 

18 U.S.C. §600 prohibits promise or special consideration for employment, 
position, compensation, contract, appointment or other benefit made pos- 
sible by an Act of Congress to any person in return for any political activity, 
or the support of a candidate or political party. Violators of this section 
shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned not more than 1 year, 
or both. 

18 U.S.C. §601 prohibits causing any person to make a contribution for the 
benefit of any candidate or political party through the denial of deprivation 
of any employment, position, or work with an agency of the Federal Govern- 
ment. A maximum fine of $10,000 or imprisonment of not more than 1 year, 
or both, shall be levied against violators. 

18 U.S.C. § 602 makes it unlawful for a candidate for Congress, elected rep- 
resentative, employee or officer of the Federal Government to knowinglv so- 
licit contributions, within the meaning of section 301(8) of the Federal Elec- 
tion Campaign Act of 1971, from any other officer, employee or person. Any 
individual in violation of this section shall be fined not more than $5,000 
or imprisoned not more than 3 years, or both. 

18 U.S.C. § 603 prohibits any officer or employee of the United States from 
making any contribution to any other officer, employee. Senator or Rep- 
resentative, if the person receiving such contribution is the employer or em- 
ploying authority of the person making the contribution. Violators are sub- 
ject to a fine of not more than $5,000 or 3 years in prison, or both. 

18 U.S.C. § 604 prohibits solicitation or receipt of any assessment, subscrip- 
tion or contribution for any political purpose, from any person known to be 
receiving or entitled to compensation, employment or benefit generated by 
Congressional appropriation for work relief purposes. Violators shall be 
fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both. 



90 

18 U.S.C. § 605 prohibits the disclosure, for political purposes, of the names 
of persons on relief, to a political candidate, committee, or campaign man- 
ager, or the receipt of such a list. Violators shall be fined not more than 
$1,000 or imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both. 

18 U.S.C. § 606 prohibits officers or employees of the United States fi"om 
discharging, promoting, or degrading the rank of any other officer or em- 
ployee for giving, withholding, or neglecting to make a political contribu- 
tion. Violators shall be fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned not more 
than 3 years, or both. 

18 U.S.C. §607 makes it unlawful to solicit or receive any contribution in 
a room or building occupied in the discharge of official duties by any person 
mentioned in section 603 above. Any person in violation shall be fined not 
more than $5,000 or imprisoned not more than 3 years, or both. 

Expansion of the Competitive Service. 

At the time the Hatch Act was passed, only about 10 percent of all Federal 
employees were covered. Now there are few employees who are not covered 
and the Hatch Act reform bill will continue such broad coverage. Further, 
5 U.S.C. § 1308 requires that Congress be provided with an annual report 
setting forth a statement in the administration of the competitive service, 
the rules and regulations and exceptions thereto in force, the reason for ex- 
ceptions, etc. § 3302 gives the President sole discretion for providing for nec- 
essary exceptions of positions from the competitive service and thus, pos- 
sibly from Hatch Act coverage. 

Government in the Sunshine Act, P.L. 94-409, 5 U.S.C. §552b, and the sunshine 
provisions of other various statutes. 

Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. § 552 

Federal Election Campaign Act Amendments of 1984, P.L. 93-443, 88 Stat. 1263. 
Includes public financing of presidential election and Umits contributions 
and expenditures for Federal candidates. 

Strengthened oversight fijnctions of Congress 

Whistleblower Protections 

Investigative Free Press 



Prepared Statement of Robert M. Tobias, National President, National 

Treasury Employees Union 

Mr. Chairman, Members of the Committee, thank you for this opportunity to ex- 
press the support of the National Treasury Employees Union for S. 185, the Hatch 
Act Amendments of 1993. 

Mr. Chairman, I believe that Federal employees should be protected from political 
coercion; that we should keep politics separate from the impartial administration of 
our laws. But, I believe that many things have changed since the Hatch Act was 
adopted in 1939 that will allow us to accomplish these goals without denying Fed- 
eral employees the same First Amendment rights and the same opportunity to par- 
ticipate in the political process that other American citizens enjoy. When the Hatch 
Act was adopted in 1939, a minority of Federal Government joDs were filled by ex- 
amination. Today nearly 80 percent of government positions require one to pass a 
standard exam, thus, jobs are filled based on objective criteria and cannot be influ- 
enced by subjective "politics." The Merit Systems Protection Board was specifically 
created in 1977 to protect the civil service from any lapse into the "spoils system" 
syndrome. The Office of Special Counsel conducts examinations and initiates admin- 
istrative prosecutions of any violations. 

In addition, the criminal code provides vast protection not present in 1939. 

Title 18, Section 599 prohibits a candidate from the direct or indirect promise or 
pledge, or the use of his influence, or the appointment of any person for the purpose 
of procuring support for his candidacy. Violators are subject to a maximum fine of 
$10,000 and/or 2 years in prison. 

Title 18, Section 600 prohibits promises or special consideration for employment, 
position, compensation, contract, appointment or other benefit made possible by an 
Act of Congress to any person in return for any political activity or the support of 



91 

a candidate of a political party. Violators of this section shall be fined not more that 
$10,000 or imprisoned not more that 1 year, or both. 

Title 18, Section 601 prohibits causing any person to make a contribution for the 
benefit of any candidate or political party through the denial or deprivation of any 
employment, position, or work with an agency of the Federal Government. Violators 
face a maximum fine of $10,000 or 1 year in prison or both. 

Title 18, Section 606 prohibits officers or employees of the United States from dis- 
charging, promoting, or degrading the rank of any other officer or employee for giv- 
ing, withholding, or neglecting to make a political contribution. Violators are subject 
to a fine of $5,000 or 3 years in prison, or both. 

I do not deny that a situation could develop in which the coercion would be so 
subtle that the law would be difficult to enforce. But that possibility is so hypo- 
thetical and remote that it should not prevent needed changes in the Hatch Act. 

It is very difficult to prove coercion or retribution in a sexual harassment case 
and while some might have argued in 1940 that women should be protected from 
such harassment by prohibiting them from performing some jobs, hopefully no one 
would argue that today. The accepted view is that we will make the laws against 
sexual harassment as tough and as enforceable as possible, but we will not limit 
a woman's right to work where she chooses in order to "protect" her. 

We need to strike a similar balance with regard to "protecting" Federal employ- 
ees. The possibility that an isolated case of coercion might go unpunished is not rea- 
son enough to deny 3,000,000 people the opportunity to participate to whatever ex- 
tent they choose in the most basic elements of our democratic process. 

The question of the perception of unfairness is often raised in the context of allow- 
ing Federal employees to be active in politics. But, I believe the facts show that 
there is sufficient protection against unfairness that will continue under S. 185. 

First, the most visible officials and other policy-makers throughout the Federal 
Government are not covered by the Hatch Act now. One cabinet member can en- 
dorse a candidate for President while another endorses his opponent. Second, Title 
18, Section 595 of the criminal code provides that, "whoever, being a person em- 
ployed in any administrative position by the United States or by any department 
or agency thereof . . . uses his official authority for the purpose of interfering or 
affecting, the nomination or the election of any candidate for the office of 
President . . . shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than 
1 year, or both." Third, those covered by the Hatch Act have always been subject 
to dismissal for using their "official authority or influence for the purpose of inter- 
fering with or affecting the result of an election." (5 USC 7324) They would continue 
to face dismissal for that offense under Section 7323 of S. 185. 

The most insidious aspect of the current Hatch Act is that its vagueness and com- 
plexity create a chilling effect. Federal employees often do not participate in permis- 
sible activities because they have heard so many conflicting opinions on what is and 
isn't allowed. We cannot even satisfactorily advise our members. Advisory opinions 
of the Special Counsel are not subject to judicial review. An employee must put his 
or her job in jeopardy in order to receive a final court decision on whether a particu- 
lar action is permissible or impermissible under the Hatch Act. 

As you probably know, when the Congress adopted the Hatch Act in 1939 it incor- 
porated by reference 3,000 separate rulings by the Civil Service Commission. Taken 
together with the criminal laws that deal with political activity. Federal employees 
are faced with a morass that is so formidable that many decide to play it safe and 
don't participate, rather than trying to figure out where the line is. 

NTEU believes very strongly that the Federal workers we represent should not 
be subject to political coercion. Believe me, NTEU would not hesitate to use any of 
its resources to see that anyone who would try to coerce our members be removed 
from his or her position and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. 

When the Hatch Act was adopted there was no such thing as the Federal Election 
Commission. Today, as I'm sure you are all well aware, every aspect of Federal cam- 
paigns is subject to disclosure and regulation. There was no Merit Systems Protec- 
tion Board in 1939 and few Federal workers had union representation. There was 
no television in 1939 and the deference the Media showed to politicians then is long 
gone. Congress itself didn't have the staff to look into a constituent's complaint 
about an unfair contract award or political pressure at some agency. 
The Hatch Act may have been a good idea in its time, but it is not 1939 anymore. 
Thank you, Mr. Chairman for introducing this important reform bill. I urge you 
and the members of the Committee to act quickly to pass S. 185 and allow Federal 
employees the political freedom they deserve. 



92 

Prepared Statement of Antonio J. Califa 

ACLU SUPPORTS REFORM OF THE HATCH ACT 

It is my pleasure to submit testimony to you today on behalf of more than 270,000 
members of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). The ACLU strongly sup- 
ports reform of the Hatch Act. We commend the chairman, Sen. Glenn, for introduc- 
ing S. 185 and thank you for allowing us to express our views on this most impor- 
tant matter. 

Background 

We recently celebrated the bicentennial of the signing of the United States Con- 
stitution, a wondrous document which ensures freedom for the individual, and for 
the minority against the majority. The flexibility and strength of this remarkable 
governance system have made the United States unique in the world. Nowhere else 
does such a heterogeneous and large population have such unfettered freedom of ex- 
pression. Concurrently with the exercise of this freedom, we have the blessing of do- 
mestic tranquillity. Political opinion and dissent are fully expressed with the ballot, 
not the bullet. The humblest citizen can criticize the President of the United States 
and work actively to replace him. This state of events is not at all commonplace in 
history. World history is replete with instances of repression and conflict and stric- 
tures on speech. 

The American guarantee of freedom of speech is found in the First Amendment 
to the United States Constitution, which reads as follows: 

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or pro- 
hibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of 
the press, or the right of the people peaceable to assemble, and to petition 
the Government for a redress of grievances. 

The First Amendment not only guarantees freedom of expression but also guaran- 
tees freedom of political expression and action. Indeed, active participation in the 
political process was a fundamental goal of the Founders — and one of the chief rea- 
sons for the Revolutionary War. Prominent men and women risked everything, even 
their lives, because the British government excluded them from the political process. 

The First Amendment embodies fundamental rights and occupies a place in our 
constitutional hierarchy reserved for those freedoms we hold most important. These 
essential rights may not be abridged except when there is a compelling state inter- 
est. The abridgment must be precisely and carefully drawn to preserve the state in- 
terest. As much as possible of the First Amendment must be left unfettered. As we 
shall show later, the Hatch Act must be changed because it impermissibly and un- 
necessarily infringes on First Amendment rights. 

The Hatch Act — Legislative History 

A study of the legislative history of the Hatch Act shows that it was enacted with 
little debate in 1939. There were no public hearings. Even this limited legislative 
history gives us some notion of the intent of Congress when passing the Hatch Act. 
The overriding concern of Congress was with Section 7324(a)(1) of the Hatch Act — 
the use of a ^deral employee's official authority or influence to affect the outcome 
of an election. The official title of the Hatch Act was "An Act to Prevent Pernicious 
Political Activities." 

Passage of the Hatch Act was seen as a response to reports of abuse of federal 
employees during the 1936 and 1938 elections. Senator Morris Sheppard of Texas 
headed a special Committee on Campaign Expenditures and use of funds and found 
cases of political coercion mainly involving Workers Progress Administration (WPA) 
supervisors and employees. 

It is a matter of common knowledge in almost every community of the Na- 
tion the taxpayers' money appropriated for W.P.A. was used to coerce and 
intimidate needy men, women and children. Many of those in charge of this 
relief boldly insisted that voters change their party registration and vote for 
candidates favored by those in charge of the W.P.A. and if they refused, 
they were denied W.P.A. work or were discharged. . . . Tens of thousands 
of people receiving large salaries were rendering no service to the people. 
They were devoting their time in pernicious political activities ... as 
pointed out by the press, the National Grange, the Republican Party, and 
other groups, the Hatch bill solves this problem.^ 

The legislative history is replete with references to "taking the veil."^ This was 
a shorthand reference to the right-privilege distinction. Until relatively recently, 
public employment was viewed by our courts as a privilege that government could 



93 

bestow on its own terms. In return for the privilege of government emplojnnent, the 
government could demand that an individual give up certain rights. This theory, 
that government can condition public employment upon the waiver of first amend- 
ment rights, has been thoroughly rejected by the Supreme Court. Connick v. Myers, 
461 U.S. 138 (1981). 

The Hatch Act passed Congress on August 2, 1939. It has been amended many 
times. The chief Hatch Act provisions can be found at 5 U.S.C. Sees. 7321-7327. 

Hatch Act — Provisions 

The ACLU strongly supports a change in Section 9(a) of the Hatch Act, 5 U.S.C. 
Sec. 7324(a)(2) which reads, in part, as follows: 

An employee . . . may not — 

(1) use his official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with 
the result of an election; or 

(2) take an active part in political management or in political campaigns. 
For the purpose of this subsection, the phrase 'an active part in political 
management or in political campaigns' means those acts of political man- 
agement or political campaigning which were prohibited of employees in the 
competitive service before July 19, 1940 by determinations of the Civil 
Service Commission under the rules prescribed by the President. 

There are over three thousand such administrative determinations. 

The ACLU joins other organizations testifying before this distinguished Commit- 
tee in opposing coercion and supporting free speech. An employee should not be al- 
lowed to use his official position as authority or influence to affect or attempt to af- 
fect the influence of an election. This coercion is inimical to First Amendment rights 
and must not be allowed. Employers cannot use their positions of trust to intimidate 
workers or the public to conform to their political judgment. This is the very antith- 
esis of free and robust expression of First Amendment rights. We wholeheartedly 
support S. 185 in its attempt to protect the worker fi*om political coercion by other 
workers or by a supervisor. 

The ACLU urges reform of 9(a)(2) of the Hatch Act which prohibits an employee 
of the Federal government fi-om taking an active part in political management or 
in political campaigns. As written, and as applied, this is a bad law — a "gag" law. 
The severe deprivation of freedom of speech stemming from this prohibition is nei- 
ther justified by fears of political coercion nor necessitated by the desire for a neu- 
tral civil service. 

The Hatch Act and the First Amendment 

Freedom of speech, guaranteed by the First Amendment, is a fundamental right 
of a free people. It stands at the pinnacle of rights cherished by Americans. The gen- 
eral standard for protection of speech is that it must be permitted unless a public 
danger is created by its exercise. This criteria does not permit the political steriliza- 
tion of several million federal and postal workers in jobs ranging from janitorial to 
professional specialization simply for fear that coercion might be applied by superi- 
ors who insist that subordinates participate in partisan activity as the price of job 
advancement. The possibility that an employee could be coerced is not a public dan- 
ger of a magnitude that justifies deprivation of speech, nor is the possibility of coer- 
cion eliminated by removing from all employees their rights of free expression, since 
advancement within the government is always a matter of discretion on the part 
of the employee's supervisor. 

Let us analyze the Hatch Act according to the traditional "strict scrutiny stand- 
ard used in numerous cases. 

Any statute regulating political speech must meet three criteria: (1) a compelling 
state interest must be at stake; (2) there must be a demonstrated need for regula- 
tion; and (3) the restriction must be narrowly drawn so as not to impose limitations 
greater than those necessary to protect the interest at stake.^ 

Does the Hatch Act "Regulate" Speech 

Assuredly, the Hatch Act deals with speech. Participation in the political process 
is at the very essence of what the First Amendment means by speech and what the 
First Amendment protects."* The Hatch Act infi"inges very substantially on the First 
Amendment. The Hatch Act not only regulates speech, it prohibits speech by federal 
employees and workers. In this aspect, the Hatch Act is unique. If a federal em- 
ployee or federal worker exercises rights that his or her fellow citizens routinely ex- 
ercise, the federal employee will lose his or her job.^ Here are some examples of the 



67-400 0-94-4 



94 

{)olitical activities that are so "pernicious" Americans must be deprived of their live- 
ihood if they engage in them. These examples are from the Office of Personnel 
Management.^ 

Recent pronouncements from the United States Office of Personnel Management, 
successor to the United States Civil Service Commission, interpret Section 9(a) to 
prohibit: (1) being a candidate for nomination or election to a national or state office; 
(2) becoming a partisan candidate for nomination or election to any public office; (3) 
campaigning for or against a political party or candidate in a partisan election for 
pubnc office or poHtical party office; (4) serving as an officer or a political party, a 
member of a national, state or local committee of a political party, an officer or 
member of a partisan political club, or being a candidate for any of these positions; 
(5) participating in the organization or reorganization of a political party, organiza- 
tion, or club; (6) sohciting, receiving, collecting, handling, disbursing, or accounting 
for assessments, contributions, or other funds for a partisan political purpose; (7) 
selling tickets for or otherwise actively promoting sucn activities as a political din- 
ner; (8) taking an active part in managing the political campaign of a candidate in 
a partisan election for public office or political party office; (9) working at the polls 
on behalf of a candidate or political party by acting as a checker, challenger, or 
watcher; (10) distributing campaign literature; (11) serving as a delegate, alternate, 
or proxv to a political party convention; (IL) addressing a convention, rally, caucus, 
or similar gathering of a political party in support of or in opposition to a candidate 
for public office or political party office, or on a partisan political question; (13) en- 
dorsing or opposing a candidate in a partisan election through a political advertise- 
ment, Broadcast, campaign literature, or similar material; (14) driving voters to the 
polls on behalf of a political party or candidate in a partisan election; or (15) initiat- 
ing or circulating a partisan nominating petition. 

In practice, the trampling of First Amendment rights goes even further. In 1987, 
a House Subcommittee heard testimony from union members who had been told 
that the following were prohibited by the Hatch Act: 

• A postal worker could not appear in a photograph contained in his wife's cam- 
paign flyer. 

• A Social Security disability investigator could not comment in a union news- 
paper on which candidate he preferred after the union had heard all candidates 
speak. 

• A worker was told he could not seek a post in a non-partisan election. He was 
also told he could not put a campaign sign in his front yard. 

• Testimony was given concerning a prohibition of local union voter registration 
drives, once the International Union had endorsed a candidate. 

Compelling State Interest 

The compelling state interest advanced by the government is in a Civil Service 
governed by the merit system. In such a Civil Service, promotion is based purely 
on merit. An employee could not be coerced into partisan political activity in order 
to advance within the Civil Service. We will assume arguendo that the state has 
an important interest in preferring advancement within its Civil Service to be based 
on merit and not patronage or coercion. 

There Must Be a Demonstrated Need for Regulation 

There was some showing of need for regulation. In 1939, almost 50 years ago, Sen. 
Sheppard of Texas showed that a few W.P.A. workers were coerced into voting a 
certain way. This abuse would still be dealt with in the legislation which this Sub- 
committee is considering. Under S. 185, it would be illegal to coerce workers into 
voting a certain way. A supervisor could not use his official position or influence to 
threaten or force workers to do his political bidding. Thus, the provisions of 5 U.S.C. 
Sec. 7324(a)(1) would remain in effect. 

What about Sec. 7324(a)(2) — the pernicious part of the Hatch Act which prohibits 
an employee from taking an active part in political management or poHtical cam- 
paignsr There is little, if any, record of abuse in this area. Indeed, Congress 
unnatched" hundreds of thousands of state and local employees from this provision 
in 1974. State and local employees are free to actively participate in political man- 
agement and campaigning. Their freedom of speech and association has been re- 
stored for the most part. The ACLU is unaware of serious problems, creating a dan- 
ger to the state, that were caused by this legislation. 

In United States Civil Service Commission v. National Association of Letter Car- 
riers, 413 U.S. 548 (1973), (hereinafter "NALC"), a decision which the ACLU consid- 
ers to be incorrect, the Supreme court upheld the Hatch Act limitations on the First 
Amendment rights of covered employees. The Supreme Court has not taken a strong 
position on whether these draconian measures are necessary to preserve the merit 



95 

system. Justice White writing for the majority stated: "Perhaps Congress at some 
time will come to a different view of the realities of political life and governmental 
service," Ibid, at 567. 
We trust that the time has come for the Congress to come to a "different view." 
There is no historical justification for restrictions on voluntary off-the-job First 
Amendment activities by federal or postal workers. There has never been a critical, 
factual evaluation based on empirical evidence as distinct from supposition. Because 
a fundamental right is involved, the burden of proof falls on proponents of such re- 
strictions. They have not met the burden of proof 

The Present Hatch Act Restrictions Are Not Narrowly Drawn 

Abuses can occur within the Civil Service. Where you have a large Civil Service 
workforce under the merit system, but also under political leadership determined 
by an election's outcome, abuses can arise. 

The restrictions on fundamental rights must be narrowly drawn. Present Hatch 
Act prohibitions are overbroad. The Hatch Act prohibits all partisan political activi- 
ties, and many nonpartisan activities, including those voluntarily undertaken and 
unrewarded, which in no way reflect the influence of a patronage scheme. The 
Hatch Act deals with the potential problems mentioned above by prohibiting almost 
all political activities. Further, it does so in vague language, incomprehensible to or- 
dinary citizens. It incorporates by reference thousands of administrative decisions 
dating back to the last century. As a result many harmless activities are prohibited 
or thought to be prohibited. There is a very definite chilling effect created by the 
Hatch Act. By its breadth and vagueness, the Hatch Act terrorizes federal and post- 
al employees into a state of total political inactivity. 

It is much better to deal with the real problems of government employees and po- 
litical activities. Here are a few examples of the specific problems that can be re- 
solved without the Hatch Act solution of "throwing the baby out with the bath 
water." 

• A bar on partisan activity while on duty in Federal buildings. 

• A bar on partisan activity while in uniform. 

• A bar on soliciting, giving or receiving political contributions in government 
rooms or buildings. 

• A bar on coercion. 

The real problems can and should be dealt with. The Hatch Act has been shown 
to be draconian, subject to political manipulation and overbroad. It is vital that mil- 
lions of federal workers be emancipated from this harsh and outdated law. 

We conclude by quoting the eloquent defense of political freedom, by Supreme 
Court Justice Hugo Black in his dissent in Mitchell. 

The section of the Act here held valid reduces the constitutionally protected 
liberty of several million citizens to less than a shadow of its substance. It 
relegates millions of federal, state, and municipal employees to the role of 
mere spectators of events upon which hinge the safety and welfare of all 
the people, including public employees. It removes a sizable proportion of 
our electorate from full participation in affairs destined to mould the for- 
tunes of the nation. It makes honest participation in essential political ac- 
tivities an offense punishable by proscription from public employment. It 
endows a governmental board with the awesome power to censor the 
thoughts, expressions, and activities of law abiding citizens in the field of 
free expression, from which no person should be barred by a government 
which boasts that it is a government of, for, and by the people — all the peo- 
ple. Laudable as its purpose may be, it seems to me to hack at the roots 
of a Government by the people themselves; and consequently I cannot agree 
to sustain its validity. 

Footnotes 

^Eccles, James R., The Hatch Act and the American Bureaucracy, Vantage Press, 
New York, 1981. p. 70. 

2 United Public Workers v. Mitchell, 330 U.S. 790 (1947). 

^NAACP V. Button, 371 U.S. 415 (1963); Grayned v. City of Rockford, 408 U.S. 
104 (1972). 

^Connick v. Myers, 461 U.S. 138 (1981). 

5 20U.S.C. 7327. 



96 

6 Stephen A. Smith, "The Uncivil Servants: PubUc Employees and Political Ex- 
pression" (A Paper Presented at the Southern Speech Communication Association 
Convention) Orlando, Florida, April 7, 1983. 



Prepared Statement of Reed Larson, President of the Right to Work 

Committee 

I am here representing the 1.7 million-member National Right to Work Commit- 
tee in opposition to the junking of the 54-year-old Hatch Act. 

The Committee is a nonpartisan citizens' coalition dedicated to a single purpose: 
to oppose compulsory unionism. Our members come from all walks of life but are 
united in their deep belief that Americans, as part of their birthright, must have 
the opportunity, but never be compelled, to join or support labor unions. 

Although the idea that workers should be free from coercion on the job seems self- 
evident, believe me when I say that for millions of Americans, coercion on the job 
is a way of life. They are forced, by Federal law, to join or support organizations 
that they disagree with. Today, S. 185 takes another big step towards extendmg this 
coercive power to millions more American workers. 
This is why the Hatch Act should be saved. 

Save it for the sake of the 2.9 million Federal workers who will no longer be able 
to say "Sorry, I'm Hatched" when a government union political operative calls and 
asks them to "volunteer" time or money for their political schemes. And for all the 
private citizens, individuals and groups, who will be threatened, harassed, or co- 
erced by government union czars in the guise of Federal bureaucrats, save the 
Hatch Act. 
Because we all know who is behind Hatch Act repeal. 

Not the general public. There is no groundswell of support from your states de- 
manding repeal of the Hatch Act. I defy any member of the U.S. Senate to produce 
evidence of public outcry for repeal of the Hatch Act. 

The one group that has the most to lose from Hatch Act repeal, Federal workers 
themselves, have indicated repeatedly that they wish you would leave the Hatch Act 
alone. In fact, a survey by the Merit Systems Protection Board in 1992 of 13,000 
Federal workers found that 7 out of 10 (70 percent) of the workers quizzed did not 
want or saw no need to ax the Hatch Act. 

Another poll by the Merit System Protections Board in 1989 of 16,000 Federal 
workers found almost identical results— 68 percent who want you to leave the Hatch 
Act filonp 

So who wants Hatch Act repeal? This legislation is by, for and about union-boss 
power. 

If you don't think so, ask yourselves why then-National Federation of Federal Em- 
ployees (NFFE) President Shelia Velazco told Congress that her union "welcomes 
the introduction of the bill [Hatch Act repeal] and urges its passage by the Sen- 
ate. . . ." Yet 89 percent of NFFE's members said in a survey that they opposed 
weakening the Hatch Act. 

Gutting the Hatch Act would authorize Federal union bosses to use the monopoly 
bargaining privileges now granted them by Congress to coerce Federal employees. 
With Big Labor controlling Federal employees' hours, transfer requests and griev- 
ances, the phony "anti-coercion" provision in Sen. Glenn's bill won't prevent a single 
Federal union boss from getting all the "volunteer" political help he ' requests." 

You don't have to take my word for it. Even Common Cause President Fred 
Wertheimer can see what Hatch Act destruction will bring: 

"Repeal of the Hatch Act's basic protections . . . will increase the potential for 
widespread abuse and open the way for implicit coercion against which there can 
be no real protection. " j • j u 

Consequently, ordinary citizens face the agonizing prospect of being audited by 
day and opening their doors at night to find an IRS agent asking for a "contribu- 
tion" to a candidate. Sounds illegal. And right now it is. But if you pass S. 185 it 
will be "business as usual." 

And if you doubt that IRS agents could become politicized, ask the Association of 
Former Internal Revenue Executives, a group of retired IRS agents. They have also 
opposed S. 185 because "the involvement of IRS employees in partisan political 
activities . . . was a major factor in the corruption, inefficiency, favoritism and in- 
tegrity problems" of the agency in the 1940s and 1950s. 

This is not a question of political rights. It's a question of special political privi- 
leges. 



97 

The Supreme Court, a much better judge than Federal union kingpins of what 
is or is not constitutional, has decided time and time again that the Hatch Act is 
constitutional. And the Court went even further in stating that it "is in the best 
interest of the country, indeed essential, that ... the political influence of [the 
Federal bureaucracy] on the political process should be limited." 

And Thomas Jefferson, a man who knew a thing or two about rights, constitu- 
tional or otherwise, flatly stated that Federal electioneering by Federal workers was 
"inconsistent with the Constitution." 

I would suggest, Mr. Chairman, that if the Committee is interested in restoring 
rights to Federal workers, it would begin by repealing the monopoly bargaining pro- 
visions of Federal law. 

But repealing the Hatch Act will not secure rights for Federal workers. 

Hatch Act repeal will only empower a few, privileged Federal union elites — at the 
expense of 2.9 million Federal workers and countless private citizens. Hatch Act re- 
peal as it stands before this Committee today is the perfect vehicle for the govern- 
ment union bosses' drive to empower themselves at the expense of taxpayers and 
citizens nationwide. 

Mr. Chairman, I urge you and your colleagues to reject this special interest power 
grab and vote against S. 185. 



Prepared Statement of the International Personnel Management 

Association 

The International Personnel Management Association (IPMA) has carefully evalu- 
ated the "Hatch Act Reform Amendments of 1993" (S. 185) that would permit all 
off-duty Federal career civil service employees to engage in a variety of partisan po- 
litical activities currently prohibited by the Hatch Act. We have concluded that the 
proposed legislation is not in the public interest and should not be enacted. 

By way of introduction, IPMA is an organization representing over 1,300 member 
agencies that include civil service commissions merit system boards and personnel 
departments at the Federal, state and local levels of government. The Association 
also represents 65,000 individuals, primarily human resource professionals and 
managers in the public sector and educators in the fields of public and personnel 
administration. IPMA's objective is to develop an interest in sound human resource 
management and provide a focus and a forum for the discussion and exchange of 
views among practitioners, theoreticians and others throughout the United States 
and abroad. 

The Association is concerned that (1) the involvement of career civil service em- 
ployees in partisan political activities will erode citizen confidence that their laws 
and regulations are being impartially enforced and (2) public programs and services 
continue to be delivered on a nonpartisan basis without regard to the recipient's po- 
litical beliefs or affiliations. 

In passing the Hatch Act originally, the Congress determined that partisan politi- 
cal activity by Federal career civil servants and those in state government who ad- 
minister Federal grant-in-aid programs must be limited if public institutions are not 
only to function, but also to appear to function, fairly and effectively. The Congress 
sought to establish a careful oalance between the right of a Federal employee, as 
an individual, to participate in the political process, and the necessity for the coun- 
try to have a nonpartisan, politically neutral civil service to administer and imple- 
ment its laws. It prohibited activities that could coerce Federal career civil servants 
and their state government counterparts into giving up their political independence 
in order to retain their employment and advance m their careers. If the proposed 
legislation is passed, we are concerned that the career civil servant's visible partici- 
pation in partisan political activities, even when not on duty, will subvert the Con- 
gress' initial intent and erode citizen confidence in the impartiality of its civil serv- 
ants. 

Administration of the public's business is sufficiently fi-aught with the opportunity 
for honest disagreement now, without introducing the notion that governmental de- 
cisions, whether favorable or unfavorable to the claimant, petitioner or applicant, 
are colored by political favoritism. A number of examples of the potential for unnec- 
essary conflict come easily to mind: 

• Taxpayers contesting Internal Revenue Service decisions concerning tax liabil- 
ities; 

• Foundations seeking tax-exempt or other special tax status; 



98 

• Claimants contesting Social Security Administration decisions over benefits or 
disability determinations; 

• Mine owners contesting decisions by the Mine Safety and Health Administra- 
tion; 

• Farmers and small business men contesting decisions over eligibility for Federal 
or state assistance; 

• Grant applicants who are denied funding; 

• Unsuccessful applicants for government employment or career advancement in 
the civil service; and 

• Unemplojmtient insurance applicants who are denied compensation. 

Why even suggest the possibility that those who are responsible for making these 
kinds of decisions are anything but impartial and apolitical in their deliberations? 

Another concern is the potential effect such a statutory change could have on rela- 
tionships between political appointees, of any Administration, and the career civil 
servants upon whom they must rely to carry out their policies and programs. Co- 
operation between the policy makers and implementers is essential to effective gov- 
erning. Again, it is not difficult to envision a situation, allowed by the proposed leg- 
islation, in which a career civil servant runs for political office as a partisan can- 
didate, is defeated and returns to work. This person mav encumber a position that 
is proximate or reports directly to a political appointee who is of the opposing politi- 
cal party. Will it be possible for the political appointee to have full trust and con- 
fidence in that career civil servant? If not, what effect will that have on the ability 
of the civil servant to function effectively, and what impact will this have on the 
organization's ability to perform its mission? 

As an Association, we are concerned with the integrity of legally mandated merit 
systems. The intent in legislating such systems was to ensure that decisions con- 
cerning hiring, development and advancement of its employees be made on the basis 
of the relative merits of the competing applicants, rather than on the basis of their 
political affiliations or other nonmerit factors. We believe this change in the law 
would send the wrong message and that, wittingly or unwittingly, there will evolve 
the perception that hiring, promotions, developmental assignments and performance 
bonuses are best earned by demonstrating the "right politics." 

We recognize that the proposed legislation attempts to incorporate protections to 
prevent problems of the kind referred to above. However, the atmosphere in which 
employees work can contain politically coercive elements even though no legally de- 
finitive evidence of coercion can be demonstrated. It is simply not possible to protect 
career civil servants ft-om reprisal for overt partisan political activities. That protec- 
tion is not possible in the current environment where political activities are, at 
most, covert and the statutory protections are strong; how much more difficult will 
it be to assure that protection in an environment where "off duty" partisan political 
activity is permitted? Is the political appointee really expected to be able to ignore 
political activity that is adverse to the interests of his/her party or in conflict with 
his/her ideological beliefs because it occurred after working hours? We believe that 
is far too much to expect of anyone. 

The principle of political neutrality for career civil servants is a commonly accept- 
ed tenet of public employment, both in the United States and in other countries. 
A study of civil service laws by the United Nations concluded that "the political neu- 
trality of the civil service is a fundamental feature of multi-party democracy and 
is essential for its efficient operation." ^ 

Concern over the politicization of the civil service was expressed as far back in 
our history as the presidency of Thomas Jefferson. The excesses that led to the en- 
actment of the Hatch Act in 1939 are well documented, and the need to insulate 
the civil service fi-om partisan politics is as compelling today as it was in 1939, if 
not more so. The Hatch Act does not disenfi-ancnise career civil servants; what it 
does is preclude them fi-om labelling themselves as Republican or Democrat civil 
servants and making targets of themselves for public suspicion or political reprisal. 

Close to three million Federal career civil servants, and a similarly significant 
number of state employees, are covered by the Hatch Act. They do not consider 
themselves second-class citizens and most of them are not petitioning for emanci- 
pation. In general, career civil servants accept the terms of their government em- 
ployment voluntarily. They fear political coercion and unlawful discrimination far 
more than they covet the chance to engage in partisan political activities by running 
for office, attending political conventions or managing political campaigns. 



1 Vaughn, Robert G., "Restrictions on the Political Activities of Public Employees, The Hatch 
Act and Beyond," George Washington Univereity Law Review, Vol. 44, 1976, page 532. 



99 

While the proposed legislation appears limited to Federal employees, the potential 
impact of this legislation on state and local government employees can not be over- 
looked. A number of states and many local governments have laws restricting par- 
tisan political activity by their employees, many of them patterned after the Hatch 
Act. Modifications to the Federal statute can't help but ultimately affect the protec- 
tions now afforded state and local government employees. 

We have recently lived through the effects of an erosion in the confidence of the 
public in all levels of government. That attitude has begun to turn around. Any leg- 
islation that impairs the neutrality of the civil service can only diminish the public's 
confidence. As Justice White noted in the case of National Association of Letter Car- 
riers v. United States Civil Service Commission, "it is not only important that the 
government and its employees in fact avoid practicing political justice, it is also crit- 
ical that they appear to the public to be avoiding it if confidence in the system of 
representative government is not to be eroded to a disastrous extent." ^ 

IPMA's concern is that the proposed amendments to the Hatch Act will foster the 
appearance, if not actually create the possibility, that decisions made by career civil 
servants can and are being made for partisan political reasons. Such a perception 
would have a severely negative impact on the ability of career civil servants to carry 
out their responsibilities to any Administration and to the American public whom 
they serve. 



Senior Executives Association 
Washington, DC, November 28, 1989 

Hon. John Glenn, 

Chairman, Committee on Governmental Affairs, United States Senate, 
Washington, DC. 

In response to your letter of November 8, 1989, we are pleased to provide you 
with a clarification of the survey done by the Senior Executives Association in 1987. 

During calendar year 1987, we had received a number of inquiries from our mem- 
bers about what the Associations position was on the proposed amendments to the 
Hatch Act being considered by the House of Representatives. Many of those inquir- 
ing had strong views either pro or con on the proposed amendments. In order to 
determine the overall position of the membership, the Board of Directors of SEA de- 
cided that a member survey would be the most appropriate vehicle. On October 27, 
1987, we mailed to our membership of approximately 2200, a written survey specifi- 
cally addressing the proposed Hatch Act amendments, and asking for the members' 
views. We asked that the survey be returned to SEA within 30 days. After six 
weeks, we tabulated the survey results. 

From the standpoint of the Association, the survey results were very disappoint- 
ing. We received a total of 480 responses (approximately 22% response rate) which 
was the least number ever received by the Association in response to a written sur- 
vey. In the past, our response rates had always exceeded 50%. In addition, we felt 
that the responses were very ambivalent. While 356 (74%) of those responding op- 
posed the Hatch Act amendments described in the survey, only 251 (52%) believed 
that the Association should oppose the amendments. To the question "Should SEA 
take no position on the bill?", 223 (46%) of those responding did not answer this 
question. 

After considering the matter carefully, the Board of Directors or SEA decided that 
they should take no position on the proposed Hatch Act amendments, since the re- 
sponse rate was so low (22%), since those responding who recommended that SEA 
oppose the legislation comprised only 11% of the membership, and since it was so 
difficult to communicate to our members and to the remainder of the SES popu- 
lation the many alternatives being considered in the legislation. 

As a result, the Association has never adopted an official position on the proposed 
Hatch Act changes. We have no current plans to take any position on this proposed 
legislation in the near future. 

Attached is a copy of the survey results for your information. We appreciate the 
opportunity to clarify this matter for you and for the Committee. 
Sincerely, 

G. Jerry Shaw 
General Counsel 



2 413 U.S. 565. 



100 

Senior Executives Association 

Washington, DC, April 28, 1993 

Hon. John Glenn, 

Chairman, Committee on Governmental Affairs, United States Senate, 
Washington, DC. 

We understand that the subject of the Senior Executives Association's survey of 
its members in 1987 concerning changes to the Hatch Act came up at the hearing 
yesterday. We are writing to again clarify the purpose of the survey and its results, 
and SEA's current position. 

l.The survey was done in 1987, approximately six years ago. 

2. SEA received the lowest response rate ever to any survey we have done (22%). 

3. The survey results were very disappointing to the Association, because they pro- 
duced no definitive position from the membership. 

4. In addition to the low response rate, the responses themselves were very ambiv- 
alent, with a substantial number of the questions not answered. 

5. Only approximately half of those surveyed believed that the Association should 
oppose the Hatch Act Amendments, and the remainder did not specify one way 
or the other. 

6. The Association itself has not taken a position on the Hatch Act changes pro- 
posed, because of the ambivalence of its membership when surveyed in 1987. 

7. The turnover in Association membership is approximately 10% per year. In ad- 
dition, Association membership has grown from approximately 2200 in 1987 to 
nearly 3200 today. This would indicate that 60%-90% of the membership in the 
Association has changed since the survey was taken. 

8. The Association concluded in our 1989 letter to you (see attached) that the sur- 
vey was not valid for the purpose of the Association taking a position on the 
proposed Amendments to the Hatch Act. It has even less validity today, nearly 
four years later. 

9. The Association takes no position on the proposed Amendments to the Hatch 
Act now being considered by your Committee. 

We hope this will clarify the Association's position on this matter for your Com- 
mittee. Thank you. 
Sincerely, 

G. Jerry Shaw 
General Counsel 



Prepared Statement of David H. Rosenbloom 

Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee: 

I am pleased to respond to your invitation to present the National Academy of 
Public Administration's views on proposed changes to the Hatch Act, the law that 
governs Federal, and some state and local, employee participation in political cam- 
paigns and elections. My testimony today represents the views of our Panel on the 
Public Service and is similar to the statement provided to this committee, in 1988, 
by the late Joseph L. Fisher, then the chairman of the Academy's Board of Trustees, 
on H.R. 3400, the forerunner of the legislation currently under consideration. 

The purpose of S. 185 is to ". . . restore to Federal civilian employees . . . their 
right to participate voluntarily, as private citizens, in the political process of the Na- 
tion, and to protect such employees from improper political solicitations." Mr. Chair- 
man, we fully understand the very positive motivations of those who seek to broad- 
en Federal employee opportunities to participate in our Nation's cherished processes 
of government. 

Revisions to the Hatch Act contained in S. 185 would permit Federal employees 
to engage in a broader range of partisan political activities when they are not on 
duty. Existing prohibitions would continue, and penalties would be toughened for 
on-the-job partisan political activities, including the use of official influence or infor- 
mation for partisan purposes. 

The Academy's Panel on the Public Service has considered this proposal carefully 
on numerous occasions and again reviewed this issue at a recent meeting. For rea- 
sons I will outline below, we continue to believe that the adverse consequences of 
permitting broader Federal employee participation in partisan campaigns and elec- 
tions far outweigh the potential benefits. 

Long History of Concern About Employee Political Activity 



101 

Political activity by Federal employees has been a matter of concern since the 
early days of the Republic. President Thomas Jefferson, shortly alter he was inaugu- 
rated, issued an executive order which called on Federal officers to refrain from at- 
tempting to influence the votes of others and from participating in "electioneering." 
Later presidents issued similar directives. For example, Rutherford B. Hayes issued 
an executive order in 1877 which stated that Federal employees should neither be 
required nor permitted to participate in political management. 

President Garfield's assassination by a disappointed office seeker led to the pas- 
sage of the Civil Service Act of 1883 which forbids: (1) coercion of Federal employees 
for political funds and service and (2) use of "official authority or influence to coerce 
the political action of any person or body." However, it was President Theodore Roo- 
sevelt who laid down prohibitions that were later incorporated in the Hatch Act. His 
Executive Order 642, dated June 3, 1907, not only prohibited certain Federal em- 
ployees from using their official authority or influence to interfere with or affect the 
results of elections, but it also prohibited those in the competitive civil service from 
taking an active part in political management campaigns. The Hatch Act, passed 
in 1939, extended these prohibitions to all Federal employees, including those in the 
excepted service. 

From time to time, these legislative limits on participation of Federal employees 
in the political process have been called an infringement on the constitutional free- 
doms of speech and assembly. That question was settled when the Supreme Court 
held in 1973 that it did not violate the constitutional rights of Federal employees 
to prohibit them from engaging in plainly identifiable acts of political management 
and political campaigning. (U.S. Civil Service Commission v. National Association 
of Letter Carriers, AFL-CIO.) However, this does not preclude changing the law. 
That is the purpose of the revisions contained in S. 185. 

Striking the Proper Balance 

On the fundamental issue of permitting Federal employees to engage, while off" 
duty, in the full range of partisan political activity, any change must recognize the 
need to balance Federal employees' right to participate in the political life of this 
nation and the public's right to a competent, impartial, nonpartisan administration 
of the law. In this delicate balance, the reahty and the perception are both vital con- 
siderations. The appearance of nonpartisanship in the execution of law is essential 
to maintaining puDlic confidence in the administrative institutions of government. 

Under current law. Federal employees may register and vote, assist in voter reg- 
istration drives not limited to one party, express opinions about candidates and is- 
sues, participate in campaigns where none of the candidates represent a political 
party, contribute money to a political organization or attend a political fund-raising 
function, wear or display badges or stickers, attend political rallies and meetings, 
join a political club or party, sign nominating petitions, and campaign for or against 
referendum questions, constitutional amendments, and local ordinances. On the 
other hand. Federal employees may not run for public office in partisan elections, 
campaign for or against candidates in partisan elections, collect contributions or sell 
tickets to political fund raising ftinctions, circulate nominating petitions, or hold of- 
fice in political clubs or parties. We believe the existing system provides a reason- 
able balance. 

Potential of Pressure on Employees 

Whatever partisan political activity is permitted off" duty would, for many, become 
the expected behavior. Those in the civil service would soon come to believe that 
better assignments, promotions, and bonuses depend in part on partisan political ac- 
tivity. Equally destructive of morale and motivation would be a growing concern 
that not Deing promoted or given a preferred assignment was due to engaging in 
political activity for the unsuccessful party or candidate or not participating at all. 
This is no way to attract and retain a high-quality civil service. 

We believe that Federal employees' involvement in partisan political activities 
would erode citizen confidence in the impartial administration of laws. Many citi- 
zens would have a growing uneasiness about the obiectivity of Federal employees 
who oppose them in partisan political campaigns and who then are involved in in- 
vestigations or decisions that might affiect them adversely. This could occur in nu- 
merous situations dealing with taxes, eligibility for individual and corporate bene- 
fits, compliance with regulatory requirements, and award for government contracts. 
Public trust in the administrative processes of government could be dangerously un- 
dermined. 

Finally, there is the issue of changes in administration from one political party 
to the other. Civil service employees' participation in partisan political activities 



102 

would greatly increase the doubts of incoming administrations about the responsive- 
ness of career civil servants who opposed them during the campaigns. Even under 
the existing law, it has been hard for many presidential appointees to shake such 
doubts, even though they were almost always unjustified. Partisan political activity 
by career civil servants could create insurmountable barriers of suspicion in many 
political-career relationships. 

Some argue for less drastic changes in the Hatch Act, such as permitting Federal 
employees off-duty to engage in the full range of partisan political activity only in 
connection with partisan elections for local government offices. Others argue for 
changes in the Act that would permit a full range of ofF-the-job partisan poUtical 
activity by those Federal employees whose duties do not include substantive respon- 
sibilities in any procurement, leasing, contracting, benefit, and employment activi- 
ties. Aside from the extraordinary difficulty, if not impossibility, of making and en- 
forcing these distinctions, it is imrealistic to expect such distinctions to permeate 
the public consciousness. Instead, the public may come to believe that all Federal 
employees may engage in partisan politics and that political partisanship dimin- 
ishes impartiality in the execution of laws. 

The Adverse Consequences Are Unacceptable 

The adverse consequences of permitting civil service employees to go beyond the 
scope of present practices are simply so great as to make them unacceptable. Simi- 
larty, a situation which continues to discourage a large number of our citizens from 
lawful exercise of political rights is also unacceptable. Questions about interpreta- 
tions of the Hatch Act need to be answered promptly and clearly so that Federal 
employees desiring to participate more fiiUy in the political process can feel com- 
fortable about doing so to the maximum extent now permitted. 

Accordingly, the Academy's Panel on the Public Service opposes modifications to 
the Hatch Act that would broaden Federal employee participation in partisan politi- 
cal activities. Nonetheless, it is the sense of our panel that if the Congress does seek 
to allow broader participation for most Federal employees, certain categories of em- 
ployees should remain under the current restrictions. These categories are: career 
senior executive servants and GM-13-15 employees. Such employees have high- 
level executive and managerial responsibiUties to the American public. Broader par- 
tisan political activity on their part would erode the public's confidence in their neu- 
trality and objective dedication to serving the public interest. We believe it would 
also put pressure, however subtly, on their subordinates to engage in similar par- 
tisan activity. The SES and GM categories are ab-eady well-estabUshed in personnel 
law and regulation and are treated different from other employees with regard to 
classification and pay. We do not believe that excluding them from broader partisan 
political participation would create definitional and administrative difficulties. We 
do believe it would be for the good of the Nation. 

Mr. Chairman, this concludes my prepared statement. We would be pleased to re- 
spond to any questions you may have. 



Prepared Statement of Bernard Rosen 

My statement on proposed revisions of the Hatch Act in S. 185 is based on my 
experience as a former Executive Director, Deputy Executive Director, and Regional 
Director of the United States Civil Service Commission, Director of Personnel for 
the United States Department of State, and long-time career employee in Washing- 
ton and the field, of which 17 years were as a career executive in Democratic and 
Republican Administrations. Since leaving government, I have continued my deep 
interest in the Federal civil service in connection with my work as Distinguished 
Adjunct Professor in Residence at The American University and as a fellow of the 
National Academy of Public Administration. 

Although the Supreme Court has ruled that prohibiting Federal employees fi;om 
engaging in political management and campaigning does not violate their constitu- 
tional rights, I fully understand the very good intentions of Members of this Com- 
mittee wno wish to enlarge opportunities for Federal employees to participate in the 
political process. However, my experience with employees of many agencies at all 
grade levels, white collar and blue collar, and in field offices as well as Washington, 
convinces me that permitting Federal employees, off duty, to be actively involved 
in partisan politics would have such serious adverse consequences as to far out- 
weigh the desirable benefits sought. Specifically, it would 

1. undermine citizen confidence in the well-established non-partisan execution of 
our laws. 



103 

2. create great distrust between political appointees and career executives particu- 
larly when administrations change from one party to the other, and 

3. generate employee uncertainty and suspicion that their off-duty political activ- 
ity, or lack of it, plays a quiet but significant role in determining their assign- 
ments, training, promotions, and awards. 

In all these matters, perception is reality. That these and other adverse con- 
sequences are widely perceived is evident in critical editorials published in 56 news- 
papers in 26 states following recent actions to revise the Hatch Act in the House 
of Representatives. In addition to the provisions in S. 185, the Bill passed by the 
House, H.R. 20, also permits Federal employees, off duty, to engage in fund raising 
for politically partisan purposes. This is a significant difference, but it is worth not- 
ing that none of the editorials identified it as the major reason for their condemna- 
tion of the action in the House. Almost all say the Senate should leave the Hatch 
Act alone. Here are the headlines on some of the editorials: 

• The Maiming of a Good Law {Rocky Mountain News) 

• Don't Unhatch Fed Workers— Diluting the Hatch Act Will Politicize the Civil 
Service (Las Vegas Review Journal) 

• An Unwanted Escape Hatch, Keep Federal Civil Service Employees Clearly and 
Formally Above Politics {Los Angeles Times) 

• Let's Keep the Hatch Act {Augusta Chronicle, Georgia) 

• Don't Scrap the Hatch Act— Keep Partisan Politics out of the Federal Civil 
Service {Des Moines Register) 

• Don't Wreck the Hatch Act— the Federal Law Protects Civil Servants and the 
Public {Buffalo News) 

• The Hatch Act Works and Fixing It Would Be a Mistake {Cincinnati Post) 

In expressing opposition to permitting Federal employees to engage, off duty, in 
the robust business of partisan politics, the editorials evidence strong concern that 
Federal employees will be subject to partisan pohtical pressures as they exercise 
their vast powers. Among the powers exercised by Federal employees are explaining 
and enforcing laws and regulatorv requirements dealing with taxes, benefits, gov- 
ernment contracts, civil service jobs, and numerous other matters which impact on 
people every day in every walk of life. The tens of millions of people who are af- 
fected by the actions of Federal employees need to feel that there are no irrelevant 
considerations when these decisions are made. In such matters, trust is important. 
The active involvement of federal employees in partisan political campaigns will un- 
dermine confidence in the impartiality of the civil service work force. The Des 
Moines Register editorial said it this way: "The public is asked to believe that Fed- 
eral workers can be fierce political partisans at night, then change into completely 
non-partisan civil servants by day. Hogwash." 

Many people believe that limiting the political activity of Federal employees began 
with passage of the Hatch Act in 1939. In fact, it has a long history reaching back 
to President Thomas Jefferson who issued an Executive Order prohibiting "election- 
eering" by Federal officers. Similar action was taken by other presidents. Prohibi- 
tions on political activity by employees in the competitive civil service included in 
an Executive Order by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1907 became the heart of 
the Hatch Act, which also extended these prohibitions to employees in the excepted 
service. It is obvious from the editorials that across our country there is currently 
a genuine concern that the pubUc interest will be served badly by weakening the 
prohibitions in the Hatch Act. 

Critics of the current law charge that Federal workers do not have clear under- 
standing of what they can and can not do and therefore "play it safe" by not engag- 
ing in political activities that are legal. Surely this can be solved, as progress has 
in fact been made, by improving the information to employees, and if necessary, 
clarifying the law without weakening it. 

Although I believe stronglv that the limits on political activity in the Hatch Act 
should not be changed for the reasons already stated, I recognize that some such 
changes may be inevitable because (A) on March 3, 1993, the House voted over- 
whelmingly for H.R. 20 to permit off-duty partisan political campaigning, etc., (B) 
the President supports the Bill, and (C) almost two-thirds of the Members of the 
Senate in the 101st Congress voted for a similar bill. 

If Federal employees are to be permitted to campaign, etc. in partisan elections, 
I believe that the adverse consequences could be reduced by amending S. 185 to pro- 
hibit supervisors, managers, and executives from such activity. This is a clearly iden- 
tifiable group. Continuing to prohibit partisan political activity by the almost 
300,000 employees in supervisory, managerial, and executive positions, would make 
three significant improvements in the Bill: 



104 

First, our government would be able to give more credible assurance to the Amer- 
ican people that decisions made within Federal agencies which affect their lives and 
fortunes will not be influenced by partisan political activity. 

Second, any new administration replacing one from the other political party is far 
less likely to have doubts about the willingness and commitment of career execu- 
tives in the bureaucracy to help the new political leadership in every legal way to 
achieve its goals. . 

And third, there would be no basis for civil service employees to assume that theu- 
supervisors will give them better assignments, promotions, and awards because of 
their partisan political activity. 

There is precedent for excluding supervisory and management personnel when 
statutes give rights to Federal civiUan employees. The Civil Service Reform Act of 
1978 authorized all Federal employees to join unions, but supervisory and manage- 
ment personnel were prohibited from participating in the management of a labor 
organization or act as a representative of a labor organization. [5 USC Section 
7120(e)] This provision has served the American people well by eliminating even the 
possible perception of a conflict of interest when there is a union-management issue. 
We have a parallel situation with regard to the Hatch Act. 

If the Hatch Act is to be changed to increase the poUtical rights of nonsupervisory 
Federal employees and Postal workers, it is reasonable to assume, that for many 
Federal employees, what is permitted will be viewed as expected. Expected or not, 
some Federal employees will enter the partisan political arena in a very public way 
with great vigor. To increase confidence that the laws will be applied properly, the 
American people would need to know that the Hatch Act prohibitions continue for 
supervisors, managers, and executives, and that they will be held accountable for 
the fair and impartial application of laws and agency policies. This in my opinion 
can help avoid an explosion of cynicism among Federal employees as well as the 
pubUc with regard to fair and impartial execution of the laws. 

Mr. Chairman, I hope my statement is helpful to the Committee as it considers 
this very important subject. 



105 



\[E mmm immm mmM 



SUITE 230 1 761 BUSINESS CENTER DRIVE RESTON. VIRGINIA 22090 



703) 438-3966 



Testimony of 

David Denholm, President 

Public Service Research Council 

Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs 

S. 185, The Hatch Act Destruction Bill of 1993 

April 30, 1993 

Mr. Chairman, members of the Committee, my name is David 
Denholm, I am the President of the Public Service Research 
Council, a national citizens lobby which was founded twenty 
years ago to protect the public interest against union special 
interests. We appreciate this opportunity to present testimony 
in opposition to S. 185, the bill which would destroy the Hatch 
Act's protections against a politicized bureaucracy and subiect 
federal and postal workers to political exploitation. 

Concern that federal workers could become political pawns is as 
old as the Republic. In 1801, President Thomas Jefferson 
issued an Executive Order stating: 

"The right of any officer to give his vote at elections as 
a qualified citizen is not meant to be restrained,, nor, 
however given, shall it have any effect to his prejudice; 
but it is expected that he will not attempt to influence 
the votes of others nor take any part in the business of 
electioneering, that being deemed inconsistent with the 
spirit of the Constitution and his duties to it." 

Similar restrictions were subsequently issued by Presidents 
William Henry Harrison in 1841, Rutherford B. Hayes in 1877, 
and Grover Cleveland in 188&. 

Nevertheless, the spoils system remained standard operating 
procedure until the assassination of President Garfield by a 
disappointed office seeker spawned the Pendleton Act of 1883. 
This legislation, which created the Civil Service System and 
instituted merit principles for federal employment, prohibited 
the collection of campaign contributions in government 
buildings and restated an 1876 Congressional enactment 
restricting the solicitation or donation of political 
contributions to high ranking appointees. 

By 1907, the political abuse of federal employees was again 
prevalent. President Theodore Roosevelt, a former Civil 
Service Commissioner, responded by issuing Executive Order 642 
which stated: "Persons who by the provisions of these rules 
are in the competitive classified service, while retaining the 
right to vote as they please and to express privately their 
opinions on all political subjects, shall take no part in 
political management or in political campaigns." 



106 



Page 2 

By the 1930's, the political coercion of government workers had 
escalated to new levels. Great numbers of Americans had been 
forced by the depression to rely on federal programs such as 
the Works Progress Administration (WPA) for employment, and 
they were easy targets for unscrupulous political operatives. 

Thomas Stokes, a reporter for the New York World Telegram, won 
a Pulitzer Prize for a series of articles detailing the plight 
of WPA workers in Kentucky who had been coerced into aiding the 
reelection effort of Senator Alban Barkley. An investigation 
by Senator Morris Sheppard's Committee on Privileges and 
Elections not only substantiated the charges raised by Stokes 
but also uncovered examples of similar coercion in several 
other states. 

This resulted in the enactment, in 1939, of legislation 
introduced by Senator Carl Hatch (D-NM) which protected federal 
employees from coercion by limiting the types of political 
activity in which they may engage. The Hatch Act prohibits 
federal employees from using their position co influence the 
outcome of elections or coercing the political action of others 
and from taking an active part in partisan political 
campaigns. The act was modified in 1940 to extend its 
provisions to certain state and local government employees. It 
has also served as the impetus for enactment of "mini-Hatch 
Acts" by most states and many local governments. 

There have been three major challenges to the Hatch Act before 
the Supreme Court; United Public Workers of America v. Mitchell 
330 U.S. 75 (1947); Oklahoma v. U.S. Civil Service Com mission. 
330 U.S. 127 (1947); and most recently. National A.ssociation of 
Letter Carriers. AFL-CIO v. U.S. Civil Service Commission , 413 
U.S. 548 (1973). The Oklahoma case questioned the section of 
the Hatch Act applicable to state and local government 
employees. The other two cases related to the restrictions on 
federal employees. 

The most common challenge to the Hatch Act is that it is an 
unconstitutional infringement on individual rights, and its 
provisions are "over broad and fatally vague." The Court, in 
Mitchell . rejected these contentions and affirmed the right of 
Congress to limit the political activity of federal employees 
in this fashion. 

Justice White, writing for the majority in Letter Carriers , 
stated: "We unhesitatingly reaffirm the Mitchell holding ... 
Our judgment is that neither the First Amendment nor any other 
provisions of the Constitution invalidates a law barring this 
kind of partisan political conduct by federal employees." The 
Court further held that the body of regulations and case law 
that had been developed since passage of the Hatch Act 
invalidated the argument that its provisions were over broad or 
vague. 



107 



Page 3 



The Court, in Oklahoma v. U.S. Civil Service Commission , upheld 
those sections of the Hatch Act applicable to state and local 
government employees, but the 1974 Campaign Reform Act removed 
these sections from 'the law. Most states, however, have passed 
legislation limiting the political activity of public 
employees. The constitutionality of such statutes was tested 
and upheld in Broadrick v. Oklahoma . 413 U.S. 601 (1973). 

Legislation to revise or repeal the provisions of the Hatch Act 
has been introduced in every Congress since its passage. Most 
early efforts were attempts at outright repeal . More recently, 
the emphasis has been on narrowing the restrictions in the 
act. It has been in recent Congresses that significant 
weakening of the Hatch Act came closest to enactment. 

Legislation to revise the Hatch Act was approved in 1976. It 
was vetoed by President Gerald Ford and the veto was upheld. 

Passage of the Civil Service Reform Act in 1978 caused many 
members of Congress including Senator Abraham A. Ribicoff, who 
was the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Governmental 
.affairs to question the wisdom of Hatch Act revision. The 
Civil Service Reform Act stripped senior executives of many of 
their civil service protections and set up a system of rewards 
which made these government employees far more subject to 
political manipulation. 

A report from the Controller General of the United States to 
Senator Ribicoff included the following observations about the 
impact of the Civil Service Reform Act on the question of 
revising the Hatch Act. 

Any safeguards established to protect Federal employees 
from coercion by management should also include some form 
of protection from outside groups. These groups may be 
even more capable of systematic coercion than management. 

The elimination of restrictions on political activity could 
very likely increase the potential for conflict of interest 
situations to develop. Problems of this type are not 
necessarily limited to the higher grade positions having 
substantial input into a decision. Any position that has 
responsibility for large Federal expenditures, even in 
small increments, may be susceptible to misusing their 
authority. 

There is no doubt that the "outside groups" referred to in this 
report includes federal and postal unions. The legislation you 
are considering now does not address itself to these concerns. 
At the very least, the remaining prohibitions on political 
coercion should include union representatives along with 
supervisors . 

In 1987 the House of Representatives approved legislation to 
revise the Hatch Act. There was a last minute attempt to 



108 



Page 4 

attach it to the Appropriations bill for the District of 

Columbia in the closing days of the Congress. This amendment 

was tabled on a voice vote on a motion by Senator William 
Proxmire (D-WI) . 

Legislation to revise the Hatch Act was approved by Congress in 
1990. It was vetoed and the veto was sustained by the U.S 
Senate. 

Pressure to change the Hatch Act emanates from federal and 
postal unions, who claim that the pressure comes from their 
members. There is reason to question the degree to which 
individual federal and postal employees desire to be 
"un-Hatched. " 

The Commission on Political Activity of Government Personnel 
conducted a survey of federal employees in 1968. Seventy-one 
percent responded negatively to the question, "Have you ever 
wanted to take part in particular kinds of political activities 
but didn't because you were a federal employee?" In addition, 
fifty-two percent felt that if more political activity by 
federal employees were allowed, it would have an effect on 
promotions and job assignments. 

In a 1977 nationwide poll commissioned by the Public Service 
Research Council, sixty-five percent of all respondents favored 
retaining the Hatch Act as is. Among respondents who were 
public employees, fifty-three percent of the union members and 
fifty-nine percent of those not members of unions opposed 
changes in the law. 

Congressman Frank Wolf who represents Virginia's 10th District 
conducted a constituent poll in 1983 in which sixty-six percent 
of the respondents opposed any change in the Hatch Act. It is 
estimated that approximately one-third of the voters in this 
district are federal employees, one of the highest such 
concentrations outside of the District of Columbia. 

A survey of federal employees conducted by the Merit Systems 
Protection Board in 1989 found that only 32% wanted the Hatch 
Act liberalized. 

It is not clear that unions can really reflect the interests of 
their members. During the 94th Congress, a representative of 
the National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE), an 
independent federal employee union, testified that a poll of 
its members found 89% opposed to changing the Hatch Act and 
that its convention had voted unanimously against any changes. 

In the 95th Congress, a representative of NFFE testified that 
the union's convention the previous year had voted in favor of 
modifying the Hatch Act. 

According to the General Accounting Office, a 1976 survey by 
the American Postal Workers Union, which showed that its 



109 



Page 5 

members "overwhelmingly supported revision of the Hatch Act" 
was conducted by union officials at randomly selected union 
meetings . 

Proponents and opponents of the act agree that federal 
employees often use the Hatch Act as a shield. In an American 

Enterprise Institute policy study entitled Hatch Act; A Civil 

Libertarian Defense . John R. Bolton wrote, 

"...the general counsel of the Civil Service Commission has 
observed that many federal employees read the Hatch Act 
very broadly in order to protect themselves from what they 
perceive to be political pressure. They are able to say 
'I'm Hatched' even in circumstances to which the act may 
not apply, and by so doing ward off attempts to have them 
engage in political activity." 

Historian Marjorie Fribourg acknowledged this tendency in a 
July 24, 1977, Washington Post article. She wrote, 

'•When a civil servant says, 'I'm Hatched," he is not 
complaining. He is protecting himself from political 
arm-twisting ..." 

Federal union officials are well aware of this. At a committee 
hearing on Hatch Act revision, an official of the American 
Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, the largest 
federal employee union told the committee, "Some federal 
employees really hide behind the Hatch Act as a way to get out 
of participating." The union apparently believes that if the 
Hatch Act is revised, it can find ways to prevent federal 
employees from getting out of participating. 

It appears then, that support for Hatch Act revision is 
centered primarily in those who stand to benefit most from the 
change - federal and postal unions and their allies in 
Congress. And, increased political power is the benefit to be 
realized. 

As Bob Williams wrote in his December 18, 1978, Federal Times 
column: 

Hatch reform also would sharply expand union clout on 
Capitol Hill. Joe Vacca, NALC (National Association of 
Letter Carriers) president, for example, believes that 
until Hatch reform is achieved his union stands no chance 
of winning the right to strike and other legislative plums 
that are aimed at expanding labor power in the federal 
establishment. 

Additional evidence of this is provided by events that occurred 
during the debate on legislation in the 95th Congress to weaken 
the Hatch Act. 

During the floor action on May 17, 1977, Representative John 
Ashbrook (R-OH) proposed an amendment that reaffirmed the 



no 



Page 6 

federal worker's right to be free from political coercion. The 
last paragraph, however, contained a provision prohibiting the 
use of union dues for political purposes of any kind. Due to 
confusion or the late hour, the amendment carried 229-158, with 
94 Democrats joining 135 Republicans in support. 

Realizing what had happened, the Democratic leadership 
suspended action on the bill. When they reconvened on June 7, 
an amendment by Representative William Clay (D-MO) to nullify 
the controversial provision passed 266-139. 

The experience with the Ashbrook amendment provides an 
interesting insight into the motivations of the bill's sponsors 
and supporters. The Ashbrook amendment was consistent with the 
stated intent of broadening the permissible political activity 
of federal employees. Only the political activities of federal 
unions were affected. Clearly, legislation which removed 
restrictions on individual political activity without a 
corresponding grant to the federal unions was not acceptable to 
the sponsors of Hatch Act revision. 

Another MSPB study found that 75% of federal personnel 
specialists who thought that liberalizing the Hatch Act would 
have an effect on the merit system believed that effect would 
be negative. 

The report to Congress on the Merit Systems Protection Board 
survey of Federal personnel specialists did not include any 
reference to the response to the question about the impact of 
liberalizing the Hatch Act. The Public Service Research 
Council obtained all of the data on this question and prepared 
a complete analysis of it. This analysis includes a breakdown 
of the response by several demographic characteristics. I am 
including a copy of a report on this analysis as part of this 
testimony. You will note that a much higher percentage of the 
more senior and more experienced personnel specialists believe 
that the impact of revising the Hatch Act would be negative. 

While Hatch Act revision enjoys support from very narrow 
special interests representing federal and postal unions aided 
and abetted by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) 
opponents of revision span the political spectrum and broadly 
represent the public interest. 

From the outset, the editorial pages of the nation's newspapers 
have been guardians of the Hatch Act. Already in 1993, 
hundreds of newspapers, including most of the major ones, have 
editorialized against this legislation to revise the Hatch 
Act. I am including as part of my testimony copies of a 
representative sample of these editorials. 

Hatch Act revision is opposed by Common Cause, the American 
Conservative Union, the Chamber of Commerce of the United 
States, the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Right 
to Work Committee, the Alumni Association of the Federal 



Ill 



Page 7 

Executive Institute, the National Academy for Public 
Administration, the American Bar Association, the National 
Taxpayers Union, and, of course, even though this is a very 
partial list, by the Public Service Research Council. 

The most commonly advanced argument for revising the Hatch Act 
is the charge that it makes federal employees "second-class 
citizens" by denying them rights granted to private sector 
employees and other members of society. This argument is rife 
with emotional appeal, which frequently degenerates into mere 
sloganeering, but it offers little to address the facts at hand. 

The Supreme Court has, through three separate challenges, held 
that the act is not an unconstitutional abridgement of the 
First Amendment or other rights of federal employees. The 
Court has consistently upheld the right of Congress to regulate 
conduct it perceives to be contrary to the interest of the 
nation as a whole. 

Justice White, in delivering the opinion of the majority in 
National Association of Letter Carriers v. U.S. Civil Service 
Commission , wrote: 

"...Our judgment is that neither the First Amendment nor 
any other provision of the Constitution invalidates a law 
barring this kind of partisan political conduct by federal 
employees . 

"Such decision on our part would do no more than confirm 
the judgment of history, a judgment made by this country 
over the last century that it is in the best interest of 
the country, indeed essential, that federal service should 
depend upon meritorious performance rather than political 
service, and that the political influence of federal 
employees on others and on the electoral process should be 
limited. 

"Although Congress is free to strike a different balance 
than it has, if it so chooses, we think the balance it has 
so far struck is sustainable by the obviously important 
interest sought to be served by the limitations on partisan 
political activities now contained in the Hatch Act." 

The wisdom of such restrictions is recognized in other 
quarters. The United Nations Handbook of Civil Service Laws 
and Practices states that "the political neutrality of the 
civil service is a fundamental feature of multiparty democracy, 
and is essential for its efficient operation." 

One problem with the Hatch Act is that it is vague and 
confusing. The Bush Administration made major strides to 
remove that confusion by compiling a short set of guidelines 
for political activity for federal and postal workers. This 
should eliminate the confusion. Many people feel these new 
regulations will make so-called "reform" unnecessary. 



112 



Page 8 

Proponents of weakening the Hatch Act also argue that the 
legislation has outlived its usefulness. They hold that the 
maturation of the Civil Service System along with other 
developments has made it unlikely that the abuse of the 1930 's 
could be repeated today. 

There is simply no evidence to support this contention, and 
many developments serve to contradict it. The federal work 
force has more than tripled in size since Senator Hatch 
introduced his legislation. Furthermore, the role of the 
federal government has grown to the point that it is now more 
involved in the daily lives of its citizens than at any other 
time in our history. 

Much of that involvement stems not from laws enacted by 
Congress but from the interpretation and implementation of laws 
by agencies of the executive branch or from regulations issued 
by agencies in their quasi-legislative capacity. Bureaucrats, 
because of their position in the policy-making process, en^oy 
an ability to influence the actions of government not shared by 
their fellow citizens. The opportunity to engage fully in 
partisan political activity, in juxtaposition with their 
existing policy-making access, would provide federal employees 
with an unacceptably disproportionate influence over the course 
of government. 

And, another factor has been added to the equation. Federal 
and postal unions are now a much more significant presence than 

r they were in the 1983 's. John R. Bolton wrote in The Hatch 

Act. A Civil Libertarian Defense : 

Indeed, the difference between coercion of an employee by a 
supervisor (the paradigm of 1939) and coercion of an 
employee by a union - which may include supervisors - (the 
paradigm of today) is that coercion by a union is far 
harder to resist. Moreover, it may well be that unions are 
far more capable of engaging in the systematic solicitation 
and intimidation of federal employees than a network of 
supervisors. Public employee unions were not of 
significant size when the Hatch Act was originally passed, 
but their advent has, if anything, only made the Hatch Act 
more important. Union protestations that their presence 
renders supervisor coercion less likely, however accurate, 
still provides no answer to the question of what renders 
union coercion less likely. 

The courts have held that labor unions enjoy certain special 
privileges and powers not commonly extended to other 
individuals or organizations, and the NLRB has recognized a 
union's relatively unfettered right to discipline members in 
the manner it chooses. This is illustrated by the opinion of 
the Supreme Court in Old Dominion Branch No. 496. National 
Association of Letter Carriers. AFL-CIO v. Henry M. Austin, et 
sLL. Austin and several fellow employees who were not members 
of the union charged that they had been libeled in a union 
publication. 



113 



Page 9 



The Court denied their claim. Justice Marshall writing for the 
majority reaffirmed the precedent established in Linn v. Plant 
Guard Workers : "...Linn recognized that federal law gives a 
union license to use intemperate, abusive or insulting language 
without fear of restraint or penalty if it believes such 
rhetoric to be an effective means to make its point." 

These arguments should also not be construed to mean that the 
potential for coercion by superiors is no longer likely. One 
need only recall the infamous Malek manual or the Nixon 
administration's attempts to turn the IRS loose on political 
enemies to realize the potential for this type of abuse is as 
real as ever. 

An examination of the plight of "whistleblowers , " federal 
employees who make public charges of government waste and 
corruption, provides valuable insight into the potential for 
coercion. The Whistleblowers: A Report on Federal Employees 
Who Disclose Acts of Governmental Waste. Abuse and Corruption , 
a Senate Governmental Affairs Committee report, not only spells 
out how employee coercion can occur, but make it clear that 
even the most stringent protections cannot prevent all forms of 
coercion. 

The report states, "There is little doubt about management's 
ability to harass an employee." The actions that are taken 
against "whistleblowers" are the same as those that were and 
could again be directed at federal employees to secure their 
political loyalty. The report also says, "Informal harassment 
is used because it is difficult to prove and can take several 
different forms which vary in subtlety. The sources of 
day-to-day aggravation are difficult to trace and, it is 
improbable that this type of harassment will ever be checked . " 
(Emphasis added) 

Robert G. Vaughn in Restrictions on the Political Activities of 
Public Employees: The Hatch Act and Beyond provided additional 
insight into the difficulty of providing adeguate protections. 
He wrote: 

Furthermore, employees subject to coercion often are not 
likely to complain because of the dangers of reprisal and 
the limited availability of relief. A study of the Federal 
Equal Employment Opportunity Program indicated that a large 
number of federal employees did not file discrimination 
complaints for fear of reprisal. A study of the 
reinstatement remedy granted by the National Labor 
Relations Board found not only that many workers refused 
reinstatement for fear of retaliation, but also that 
three-quarters of those reinstated left the company within 
two years because of 'bad company' treatment. 

The situation is further complicated by the passage of the 
Civil Service Reform Act of 1978. The legislation sought to 



114 



Page 10 



improve efficiency by making the bureaucracy more responsive to 
the President and department heads. To accomplish this end, 
management's powers of discipline and discharge were 
strengthened. Institution of the Senior Executive Service and 
merit pay concepts made promotions and pay raises of middle and 
upper level managers contingent upon evaluation by their 
superiors, who are ultimately political appointees. This has 
greatly increased the potential for political coercion. 

But, there is an even more important consideration. In 
addition to protecting the individual employee from political 
coercion, the Hatch Act serves to protect the general public 
from political intimidation by a partisan bureaucracy. The 
citizens of this nation have a right to federal programs and 
regulations whose administration and enforcement are free of 
political considerations or favoritism. 

John Bolton, in his previously cited defense of the Hatch Act, 
summed up this point. 

"...Government workers have a right to be free from 
political coercion - particularly from any systematic 
solicitation by either their superior or their coworkers. 
Since the power to coerce derives in substantial amount 
from the power vested in government, the Hatch Act is, in 
effect, a case of government restraining itself. 
Nongovernmental employees have similar First Amendment 
rights - the right not to have their freedom to engage in 
political activity 'chilled' by political activists who 
also administer government programs and regulatory 
law-enforcement agencies. 

And in his veto of 1990 legislation. President Bush asserted: 

"The Hatch Act has successfully insulated the Federal 
Service from the undue political influence that would 
destroy its essential political neutrality. It has been 
manifestly successful over the years in shielding civil 
servants, and the programs they administer, from political 
exploitation and abuse. The Hatch Act has upheld the 
integrity of the civil service by assuring that Federal 
employees are hired and promoted based upon their 
gualif ications and not their political loyalties. 

"I am firmly convinced that any appreciable lessening of 
the current protections afforded to Federal civil servants 
by the Hatch Act will lead to the repoliticization of the 
civil service and of the programs it administers. We 
cannot afford, in the final decade of this century, to 
embark on a retreat into the very worst aspects of public 
administration from the last century." 

The limitations on political activity imposed by the Hatch Act 
are constitutional. The Supreme Court has, on three separate 
occasions, affirmed this. 



115 



Page 11 



There is little evidence that the pressure to weaken the Hatch 
Act emanates from federal employees. The majority have 
consistently indicated a desire to remain "Hatched." 

It appears that the desire to emasculate the Hatch Act rests 
with those who stand to gain increased political power - the 
postal and federal unions. 

The Hatch Act is now more necessary than ever to protect 
federal employees from political coercion by their superiors or 
their unions. A review of the historical development of the 
Hatch Act confirms that the only truly effective protection for 
federal employees has been a prohibition of partisan political 
activity. 

Furthermore, the Hatch Act is an invaluable protection in 
preventing a "chilling" of the political rights of the 
citizenry by a partisan bureaucracy. 

President Ford in his veto of 1?76 legislation to weaKen the 
Hatch Act stated: 

"The public expects the government service will be 
provided in a neutral, nonpartisan fashion. This bill 
would produce the opposite result... 

"If the prohibitions against political campaigning were 
removed, we would be endangering the entire concept of 
employee independence and freedom from coercion which has 
been largely successful in preventing undue political 
influence in government programs or personnel management. 

"If this bill were to become law, I believe pressure 
would be brought to bear on federal employees in extremely 
subtle ways beyond the reach of any anti-coercion statute 
so that they would inevitably feel compelled to engage in 
partisan activity. 

"This would be bad for the employee, bad for the 
government and bad for the public..." 

Mr. Chairman, this legislation you are considering, S. 185, 
would remove almost all of the Hatch Act's present restrictions 
on partisan political activity by federal and postal workers. 
The proponents of the bill assure you that you can remove these 
restrictions and keep the protections against coercion. What 
they fail to realize is that the prohibitions are the 
protections . 

This legislation, by removing the Hatch Act's restrictions on 
partisan political activity by federal and postal workers would 
subject them to political pressure. It would result in the 
destruction of the merit system in federal employment and the 
repoliticization of the federal bureaucracy. We strongly urge 
you to vote against it. 



116 

Department of the Treasury 

Internal Revenue Service 

Washington, DC 

Mr. Robert M. Tobias, President, 

The National Treasury Employees Union, Washington, DC. 

Dear Mr. Tobias: Commissioner Goldberg has asked me to respond to your letter 
dated November 1, 1989, in which you request information regarding the extent to 
which Examination employees have discretion in choosing taxpayers for audit. For 
Fiscal Year 1989, approximately 65 percent of examined returns were selected from 
computer based sources using set mathematical formulas. Those include DIF and 
DIF related returns, training returns which are also selected using DIF formulas. 
Service Center and Information Returns Program (IRP) returns, and TCMP returns 
from which the DIF formulas are generated. 

The remaining 35 percent of examined returns are screened for selection using ob- 
jective predetermined criteria; however, the judgment and experience of the screener 
are also significant elements in the selection process. These sources are: 

Local and Other Source — Returns selected by local decision in the districts, based 
on characteristics on the return indicating noncompliance; and returns not included 
in other categories. Examples are the Unreported Income Program; Information 
Gathering Projects; delinquent returns; information reports; other related returns 
picked up as a result of tne examination of non-DIF individual, partnership, fidu- 
ciary ana S-Corporation returns; claims; employee returns; referrals from Appeals, 
Collection, states and other U.S. agencies; etc. 

Tax Shelters — Key cases identified by districts and related investor returns. 

Fraud and Enforcement — Referrals from Criminal Investigation or Collection, in- 
formants claims or information document matching where gross inflation of deduc- 
tions or credits or understatement of income is indicated when the return is 
screened. This category also includes the filing of multiple returns for the purpose 
of receiving refunds. 

Abusive Protestor — Returns for taxpayers who claim taxes are illegal and/or vio- 
late their fifth amendment rights and/or claim excessive withholding allowances. 

Coordinated Examination Program — Returns of large corporations. 

There is some room for discretion in the selection of tax retvu-ns. However, there 
are safeguards in the form of Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) procedures and ac- 
countability to superiors to prevent abuse and conflict of interest and to ensure eq- 
uitable treatment of taxpayers. Policy statement P— 4-6 provides that "examiners 
will not examine or survey the returns of taxpayers with whom they have had a 
business or social relationship of a nature that might impair their impartiality and 
independence". Policy statement P-4-7 provides in part that examiners will "deter- 
mine the correct amount of the tax with strict impEirtiality as between the taxpayer 
and the Government, and without favoritism or discrimination as between tax- 
payers". IRM 4232, General Standards, bars Examination employees from examin- 
mg returns where the taxpayer has significant personal financial transactions with 
the examiner or the examiner's relationship with the taxpayer might impair or ap- 
pear to impair the examiner's partiality and independence. 

Examiners have procedures for completing information reports if there is an indi- 
cation a return should be examined. These information reports must be approved 
by the examiner's immediate supervisor and screened by the Chief, Planning and 
Special Programs. To secure a return for examination, it should be established on 
Examination's computerized system for inventory control of returns. If an examiner 
requests a return related to another return under examination or for reference or 
information, IRM 48(13)1, Text 212 requires that the reason for requesting the re- 
turn be given and the request be approved by the manager. In addition, disclosure 
laws provide civil and criminal penalties for the misuse of taxpayer return informa- 
tion. 

I hope this information will be helpful to you. 
Sincerely yours, 

David G. Blattner 



117 

U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board 

Washington, DC, April 28, 1993 
Hon. John Glenn, 

Chairman, Committee on Governmental Affairs, 
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC 

Dear Mr. Chairman; We were recently requested by Committee staff to provide 
additional information on a 1988 svirvey of Federal personnel specialists by the U.S. 
Merit Systems Protection Board on the issue of Hatch Act reform. The survey in 
question was sent in June 1988 to a sample of 5,507 Federal personnel specialists. 
The sample included both nonsupervisory and supervisory individuals at grades 11 
and above in personnel or equal employment opportunity related occupations. The 
sample was drawn from a total population of 18,598 individuals meeting those cri- 
teria. Approximately 3,500 questionnaires were returned, representing a favorable 
64 percent response rate. 

Our survey included the question shown below regarding the impact of Hatch Act 
reform. The responses to that question are also listed. 

Question: In your opinion, how would modification of the Hatch Act to per- 
mit Federal employees greater opportunity for political activity affect the 
operation of the Merit System, in general? 

Percent 
Response Choice ^.^^^S. 

ed') 

It would have a positive effect on the work environment 12 

It would have no effect on the work environment 32 

It would have a negative effect on the work environment 36 

Don't know/No basis to judge 21 



■"Totals do not equal 100 percent because of rounding. 

In interpreting these results, one should note that the 21 percent responding 
"Don't know/no basis to judge" do not necessarily equate to "have no opinion." 
Therefore, they may not be considered as neutral. The responses of this one-fifth 
of the sample must be read at face value — they don't know what the effect would 
be, or they have no basis on which to offer an opinion. 

As shown, therefore, just under one-third of the respondents believe that Hatch 
Act reform of the kind described by the survey question would have no effect (either 
negative or positive) on the work environment, and slightly better than one in ten 
believes that such change would have a positive effect. Similarly, slightly over one- 
third of the respondents believe that such change would have a negative effect on 
the work environment. 

As these results demonstrate, the Federal personnel community is widely divided 
in its view of the effect Hatch Act reform would have on the operation of the Federal 
merit system. If the Committee would like any additional information on the 
Board's work in this area, please let us know. 
Sincerely, 

John M. Palguta 
Deputy Director, Policy and Evaluation 



Common Cause, 
Washington, DC, March 8, 1993. 

Dear Senator: Legislation to amend the Hatch Act, which for more than 50 years 
has protected Federal employees from inappropriate political pressures, is expected 
to be considered by the Senate later this spring. Common Cause strongly urges you 
to oppose this legislation. 

S. 185, Hatch Act Reform Amendments of 1993, makes basic changes in the cur- 
rent Hatch Act restrictions on partisan poUtical activity by Federal workers, opening 
the door to implicit coercion and abandoning the fundamental concept of an 
vmpoliticized civil service. 



118 

S. 185 will repeal Hatch Act protections and for the first time in more than 50 
years allow Federal civil service and postal employees to actively participate in par- 
tisan political activity. It would permit Federal workers to serve as officers of a po- 
litical party, to raise partisan campaign contributions from their colleagues, to man- 
age campaigns, and to administer political action committees (PACs). The only re- 
straint is that the partisan activity would have to occur in off-hours. 

Repeal of the Hatch Act's basic protections, as proposed in S. 185, will increase 
the potential for widespread abuse and open the way for implicit coercion against 
whicn there can be no real protection. With basic restrictions on partisan activity 
repealed, no procedural or other safeguards will be sufficient to protect against sub- 
tle forms of political favoritism or coercion of Federal workers. 

It is important to recognize that under the current Hatch Act, Federal workers 
already are permitted to engage in certain political activities. For example, they 
may make political contributions to candidates, serve as rank-and-file members of 
political parties, and engage in nonpartisan political activities. It is only the most 
active levels of partisan participation from which they are currently barred. In 
drawing this line, we believe that the current Hatch Act strikes an appropriate bal- 
ance between the Federal worker's ability to participate in political activities and 
the public's right to fair and impartial administration of government. 

Common Cause recognizes that the current regulations governing administration 
of the Hatch Act are complicated. There may be ways to clarify and simplify for 
workers the degree of participation they are permitted under the Hatch Act without 
lifting the basic restrictions on partisan activity. We urge the Senate to instead ex- 
plore this possibility. . . 

The Hatch Act was designed to ensure that the Federal Government is adminis- 
tered in a fair and impartial manner. We agree with the U.S. Supreme Court which 
stated, in upholding the constitutionality of the Act, that "it is in the best interest 
of the country, indeed essential, that Federal service should depend upon meritori- 
ous performance rather than political service.^' 

Common Cause strongly believes this important integrity-in-government measure 
should not be repealed. We urge you to oppose S. 185 and other proposals that 
would repeal necessary prohibitions on partisan political activity by Federal employ- 
ees. 

Sincerely yours, 

Fred Wertheimer, 

President 



119 



mm mmwm mmmm mmm 

SUITE 230 : 761 BUSINESS CENTER DRIVE RESTON. VIRGINIA 22090 "03) 438-3966 

March 1993 
Special Report: The Hatch Act and the Merit System 

What affect would revising the Hatch Act 

have on the federal Merit System? 

The Opinion of Federal Personnel Officials 

In June of 1988 the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), an independent 
agencv of the Federal Government conducted a survey of Federal personnel 
specialists. 

The survev was sent to a stratified sample of 5,507 personnel specialists. More 
than 3.500 replies were received. 

The results of that survev were pubhshed by the MSPB in November 1989 in 
Federal Personnel Management Since Civil Service R eform: A Survev of Federal 
Personnel Officials, 

The survey contained several questions asking whether these specialists had 
personallv observed prohibited practices involving political solicitations, pressure 
or favoritism. The response to these questions, which were published, generally 
indicate that the Federal Civil Service is free of partisan political influence. 

The survev also contained a question asking the opinion of these specialists 
about the impact on the Merit System of revising the Hatch Act to allow greater 
political activity by federal civil servants. 

Three out of four personnel specialists who felt that revising the Hatch Act 
would have an affect on the Merit System felt that the effect would be negative. 

Among personnel speaalists who are members of the Senior Executive Ser%nce. 
70% of the total, more than 95% of those who felt that it would have an effect, felt 
that the effect would be negative. 

The response to this question was not published in the report. 

Since 1987 legislation to revise the Hatch Act has been a very active issue in 
Congress. On March 3. 1993 the House of Representatives apporved a bill to revise 
the Hatch Act by a vote of 333 to 86. The Senate Governmental Affairs Committee 
IS planmng hearings on the legislation in the near future. 

The opinion of Federal personnel speciahsts on a question which can so directly 
impact on the integrity of the Merit System ought to be of great interest to 
Congress. 

The following information is provided to fill the void in the MSPB's report. 



120 



What affect would revising the Hatch Act 

have on the federal Merit System? 
The Opinion of Federal Personnel Officials 

Here is the question as it appeared in the survey and the results obtauied from the 
Merit Systems Protection Board. 

In your opinion, how would modification of the Hfftr^ Act to permit Federal 
employees greater opportonity for political activity affect the operation of the 
Merit System, in general? 

It would have a positive effect on the work environment. 11.5% 

It would have no effect on the work environment. 32.3% 

It woold have a negative effect on the work environment. 35.5% 

Don't know/No basis to judge. 20.7% 



The Hatch Act and the Merit System 
Page 2 



121 



Demographics of Response 

The survey also contained several demographic questions about the respondents. 

Here is a breakdown of some of the demographic questions. 

In yoar opinion, how would modification of the Hatch Act to permit Federal 
employees greater opportunity for political activity affect the operation of the 
Merit System, in general? 

How long have you worked in the Federal personnel field? 





Positive 
Effect 


No 
Effect 


Negative 
Effect 


Don't 
Know 


Less than 1 year 


6.9% 


29.1% 


28.9% 


35.1% 


1 to less than 2 years 


15.6% 


23.0% 


37.4% 


24.0% 


2 to less than 10 years 


12.8% 


32.0% 


30.9% 


24.3% 


10 to less than 20 years 


12.1% 


33.6% 


35.3% 


19.0% 


20 to less than 30 years 


7.8% 


31.4% 


44.0% 


16.8% 


•30 years or more 


13.7% 


28.8% 


27.1% 


30.4% 


Total 


11.4% 


32.4% 


35.7% 


20.6% 



In your opinion, how 'would modification of the Hatch Act to 
permit Federal employees greater opportunity for political 
activity a£fect the operation of the Merit System, in general? 

What is your current grade level? 





Positive 
Effect 


No 
Effect 


Negative 
Effect 


Don't 
Know 


11 


9.8% 


32.1% 


28.8% 


29.4% 


12 


13.1% 


32.5% 


33.8% 


20.6% 


13 


11.8% 


33.2% 


38.9% 


16.0% 


14 


11.5% 


31.7% 


46.0% 


10.9% 


15 (or equivalent) 


7.0% 


28.8% 


56.5% 


7.7% 


16 (or equivalent)* 










SES 


3.5% 


21.8% 


70!4% 


4.2% 


Total 


11.4% 


•32.3% 


35.5% 


20.7% 


* Sample too small for analysis 








The Hatch Act and the Merit System 
Pages 









122 



In your opinion, how would modification of the Hatch Act to 
permit Federal employees greater opportnnitj for political 
activify affect the operation of the Merit System, in general? 



Are you? 

Male 

Female 

Total 



Positive 
Effect 


No 
Effect 


Negative 
Effect 


Dont 
Know 


13.1% 


35.4% 


39.2% 


12.3% 


10.0% 


29.4% 


32.1% 


28.5% 


11.5% 


32.3% 


35.5% 


20.7% 



In your opinion, how would modification of the Hatch Act to 
permit Federal employees greater opportunity for pohtical 
activity affect the operation of the Merit System, in general? 



Where is your job located? 



Positive No Negative Don't 

Effect Effect Effect Know 



Within Washington, D.C., 

metropolitan area 10.3% 25.2% 44.1% 20.47o 

Outside Washington. D.C., 

metropolitan area 11.9% 34.9% 32.3% 20.8% 



Total 11.5% 32.3% 35.67c 20.7% 



The Hatch Act and the Merit System 
Page 4 



123 



The Hatch Act is doing a good job of 
preventing a pohtical bureaucracy. 

Responses to other questions in this survey indicate that the Hatch Act 
is effectively preventing the politiazation of the federal bureaucracy. 

In all but one instance, more than 98% reported no problems. In 
response to a question about appointment to competitive service based 
on political affiliation, however, more than 7% said that they had 
observed this at least once within the last 12 months. 

The survey asked whether, during the past 12 months any of the 
following practices had been personally observed in the organization of 
the respondent. 

An employee being pressured to contribute to a political campaign?" 

Yes .7% 
No 99.3% 

An employee being pressured to participate in partisan political 
activity?" 

Yes .4% 
No 99.6% 

"An employee actively seeking partisan political office or raising funds 
on behalf of a partisan political candidate?" 

Yes 1.9% 
No 98.1% 

"A career employee being pressured to resign, transfer, or accept 
reassignment because of his/her political affiliation?" 

Yes 1.9% 
No 98.1% 

"An appointment to the competitive service made as a result of political 
party affiliation?" 

Yes 7.2% 
No 92.8% 



The Hatch Act and the Merit System 
Page 5 



124 



The Opinion of Federal Employees 

on Participation in Partisan 

Political Activity 



In the 1989 Ment Principles Survey of federal empl-^vees conducted by 
the Merit Systenas Protection Board there was a question about political 

activity. 

The survey was sent to a representative sample of 21.454 federal 
employees. Of these 15,939. over 74%. replied. 

Here is the question as it appeared in the survey and the results 
obtained from the Merit Systems Protection Board. 

I would like to be able legally to be more active in partisan political 
activities. 



Strongly agree 


12.9<re 


Agree 


18.9^c 


Neither agree or disagree 


40.9% 


Disagree 


19.0% 


Strongly disagree 


8.2% 



The Hatch Act and the Merit System 
Page 6 



125 



Demographics of Response 

The survey also contained several demographic questions about the 
respondents. 

Pay Grade: 

I would like to be able legally to be more actire in paiidsan political 
activities. 

What is your present pay grade? 





Strongly 
Agree 


Agree 


Neither 


Disagree 


Strongly 
Disagree 


GSl-4 


12.0% 


14.6% 


45.5% 


22.1% 


5.7% 


GS5-8 


10.9% 


15.7% 


46.4% 


19.5% 


7.5% 


GS9-12 


16.0% 


18.7% 


40.2% 


17.6% 


7.5% 


GS 13-15 


13.1% 


23.5% 


34.5% 


18.6% 


10.3% 


GM 13-15 


12.4% 


20.7% 


32.7% 


20.9% 


13.3% 


GS 16-18 


10.7% 


15.7% 


23.7% 


23.2% 


26.8% 


ESl-4 


8.4% 


14.7% 


25.9% 


24.8% 


26.2% 


ES5-6 


8A% 


13.6% 


19.3% 


27.6% 


31.0% 



Age: 



I would like to be able legally to be more active in 
partisan political activities. 



What is your age? 





Strongly 
Agree 


Agree 


Neither 


Disagree 


Strongly 
Disagree 


Under 20 






56.7% 


21.1% 


22.2% 


20-29 


11.0% 


15.1% 


50.6% 


15.7% 


7.6% 


30-39 


12.4% 


20.6% 


43.8% 


16.4% 


6.8% 


40-49 


14.7% 


20.5% 


37.6% 


18.8% 


8.4% 


50-54 


11.6% 


16.1% 


38.1% 


24.6% 


9.6% 


55-59 


12.7% 


15.9% 


36.4% 


23.5% 


11.5% 


60-64 


11.6% 


19.4% 


40.5% 


21.1% 


7.4% 


65 and over 


10.4% 


18.5% 


38.9% 


22.1% 


10.3% 


The Hatch Act and the Merit System 
Page 7 







67-400 0-94-5 



126 



Other Evidence of Federal Employee Opinion 

The proponents of revising the Hatch Act have attempted to use the response 
to this question to indicate that federal workers want the Hatch Act revised. 

This claim fails to put the question m context. In 1968 the Commission on 
Political Activity of Government Personnel conducted a survey of federal 
employees m which it was asked, 

Have you ever wanted to take part in particular kinds of 
political activities but didn't because you were a federal 
employee? 

Seventy-one percent responded negatively to this question. This is very 
comparable to the sixty-nme percent who either don't want to be more active 
in partisan politics or expressed no opinion in the 1989 MSPB survey. 

The 1968 survey also included a question that sheds more light on this 
question. In the 1968 survey, fifty-two percent indicated that, if more 
political activity were allowed it would have an effect on promotions and job 
assignments. 

What the 1989 MSPB survey fails to do is to put the question in the 
perspective of the value federal workers put upon the Hatch Acts protections 
against politics having an impact on their employment. 

In May 1988 the National Journal reported the results of a survey of 
Government Executives in which there was a question which asked: 

Should the Hatch Act be amend to permit federal workers to 
run for office and manage and raise money for campaigns on 
their own tune? 

Of the 3607 total replys, 3255 were federal government employees. Fully 
60% of these opposed such revision of the Hatch Act. 

Yes 39.4% 

No 60.6% 

There is no evidence to suggest that the value put on these protections has 
changed since 1968. 



The Hatch Act and the Merit System 
Pages 



127 








LIPBOOK 



Hatch Act Editorials 



1993 



1761 Business Center Drtve. Suite #230 Reston. Virginia 22090 



128 



Index 



National 
The Wall Street Journal. February 1 9. 1 993 
The Christian Science Monitor. March 11.1 993 
Alabama 

Birmingham News. March 26, 1 993 
Arizona 

The Arizona Republic, March 4, 1 993 
California 
Los Angeles Times. March 3. 1993 
Fresno Bee. March 1 8, 1 993 
Colorado 
Loveland Daily Reporter-Herald. March 1 0, 1 993 
Rocky Mountain News, March 7, 1993 
Durango Herald. March 1 0. 1 993 
Connecticut 

Waterbury Republican-American, March 8, 1 993 
District of Columbia 

The Washington Times, March 2. 1993 
Flonda 
Ocaia Star-Banner. March 24. 1 993 
News-journal. March 5. 1993 
Georgia 
Augusta Chronicle. January 30. 1993 
Rome News-Tribune. March 14. 1993 
Illinois 

Pantagraph. March 1 . 1 993 
Indiana 

The Indianapolis News. March 2. 1993 
Iowa 

Des Moines Register. March 5. 1 993 
Massachusetts 
Boston Herald, March 8, 1 993 
Telegram & Gazette, March 1 0. 1 993 
Patriot Ledger. March 9. 1 993 
Standard-Times. March 10. 1993 
Maine 

Bangor Daily News. March 1 6. 1 993 
Sunday Sun-Journal. March 14 1993 
Minnesota 

Red Wing Republican Eagle, March 4, 1993 
Mississippi 
Sun Herald. March 9. 1993 
Mississippi Press. February 25. 1993 
Mississippi Press, March 26, 1 993 



I 



Missoun 
The Kansas City Star. March 1 4. 1 993 
St. Joseph News-Press. March 20. 1 993 

Nebrasl<a 
Omaha World-Herald. March 8. 1 993 

Nevada 
Las Vegas Review-Journal. March 1 0. 1 993 
Elko Daily Free Press. February 25. 1993 

New Mexico 

Las Cruces Sun-News. March 7. 1993 

New Yor(< 
The Buffalo News. March 4. 1 993 
Watertown Daily Times. March 6. 1993 
Niagara Gazette. March 5. 1993 
Press-Republican, November 27. 1992 

North Carolina 
Fayetteville Observer-Times. March 12. 1993 

Ohio 
The Cincinnati Post. February 22. 
The Philadelphia Inquirer. March 1 

Pennsylvania 
Observer-Reoorter. March 5. 1993 
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Marcn 6. 
News. Febmary 25. 1993 
Evening Standard. March 2, 1993 

Tennessee 
Chattanooga News-Free Press. Febmary 7. 1993 
Chattanooga News-Free Press. March 22. 1 993 
Leat-Chronicle, March i i, 1993 

Texas .i 

Houston Post, February 22. 1 993 
Tyler Morning Telegraph, March 2. 1 993 
Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, February 27. 1 993 

Virginia 
Richmond Times-Dispatch. February 28. 1993 
Daily Press. Febmary 28. 1 993 
Danville Register & Bee, March 5, 1993 

Wisconsin 

Milwaukee Sentinel. March 1. 1993 
Wisconsin State Journal. March 8. 1993 
Journal Times. March 7, 1 993 
Oshkosh Northwestern, March 8. 1 993 



1993 
. 1993 



1993 



129 



THE WALL STREET JOURNAL FRIDAY. FEBRUARY 19. 1993 



REVIEW Sc OUTLOOK 
Hatch Not Hacks 



One of President Clinton's few real 
spending cuts is nis pledge to reduce 
the federal work force tfirougfi attri- 
tion by 100.000 over lour years. But he 
IS unlikely to accomplish thaj if he 
rees alone with an eifort by Congress 
to destroy the Hatch Act. which limits 
the political activity of federal work- 
ers. Such a move would dramatically 
mcrease the power of public employee 
anions and make it less likely that 
Congress would ever vote to stream- 
line or reform the bureaucracy. 

The Hatch Act. named after Demo- 
cratic Senator Carl Hatch of New Mex- 
ico, was passed in 1939 to tighten long- 
standing protecuons against a politi- 
:ized federal work force. A Pulitzer 
Pnze-wmmng senes had documented 
how New Deal workers in Kentuck\' 
and other states had been coerced into 
supponing political incumbents. 

Since Its enactment. Hatch has 
been challenged three times before 
the Supreme Court on the grounds it 
Infnnges on the rights of workers. 
Each time it has been upheld. In 1973. 
Justice Byron White, the only Democ- 
ratic appointee now on the court, 
wrote in an opinion that "it is in the 
best interest of the country, indeed 
essential, that ... the political influ- 
ence of federal employees on others 
md on the political process should be 
limited." 

Frustrated by the couns. federal 
employee umons nave time and again 
tried to modify the Hatch Act. Joe 
Vacca. the president of the National 
Association of Letter Camers, has 
said that federal employees will never 
win the nght to stnke until Hatch is 
changed. In 1975. President Ford ve- 
toed a Hatch Act repeal. In 1990, Pres- 
ident Bush did the same thing and the 
Senate narrowly upheld his veto. 

Last year. Bill Clinton said he 
would support some changes in the 



Hatch Act but stopped short of calling 
for Its repeal. Public employee unions 
are betting he will be unwilling to 
veto whatever bill passes Congress. A 
bill to gut the Hatch Act is moving 
through Congress at warp speed and 
has already been voted out of commit- 
tee. It may reach the House floor as 
early as next Tuesday. 

Ironically, there is precious little 
evidence that federal workers them- 
selves want changes in the Hatch Act. 
A 1989 survey of federal employees by 
the Merit Systems Protection Board 
found that only 22'^c wanted the act 
weakened. There are sound reasons 
for this attitude. "When a civil ser- 
vant says. I'm Hatched.' he is not 
complaining." says tiistonan .\Iar- 
jorie Fribourg. "He is protecting him- 
self from political arm-twisting." In- 
deed, one federal employee umon offi- 
cial groused in 1990 that "some fed- 
eral employees really hide behind the 
Hatch Act as a way to get out of par- 
ticipaung ' in politics. 

Groups such as Common Cause op- 
pose curbing the Hatch Act, because 
they recogmze it is the only way to 
avoid tiUTimg federal unions into full- 
fledged partisan political machines. 
Three umon presidents were sus- 
pended from their federal jobs for 60 
days under Hatch for openly backing 
Walter Mondale in 1984. 

This countr\' replaced the spoils 
system with a civil service more than 
100 years ago. That system cenamly 
has Its problems, but at least its em- 
ployees don't openly play politics. Bill 
Clinton would be foolish to allow the 
civil service to become a giant lobby 
for its own self-interest. But should he 
cave in and sign a bill gutting the 
Hatch Act, he should have the honesty 
to rename it the Hack Act, because 
that IS the direction a politicized civil 
service will inevitably take. 



130 



"nffiCHRlSTIAN SCIENCEMONTroR 



MA-26 



30STON.MA 
OKKOTi 



Mf,R ^1 1993 



Go Slow on Voting Act 



IF >ou work ror the federal 
government, should you be 
allowed to participate m po- 
.■.niiil ;uiiviiy at all levels? 

I'm ilif I, LSI fj;! years ledcroi 
i.iii|)ioyi.'cii iKivu ueen barred from 
I kwmw (jolitical aciivuies. Like ail 
Mii/.i'Ms. ilicy havf tlie right to 
vole, belong to a political party, 
.ind coninbute to political cam- 
liaigiis. 

liiii iluy caimol, under a dunv 
l)le. "i.i-ycai-old law - the Hatch' 
AlI - othci wKSf participate m pol- 
iiK> at ilic national level. The act, 
naiiit-'d lor its originator, Sen. Carl 
iialcli (D) of New Mexico, has 
piosiriljid (.•Icclioneering by US 
govt'i nment employees at the 
siati' and federal levels. 

This undemocratic but not 
ncitvsaiily unfair policy bars fed- 
eral employees from seeking state 
1)1 Icilfial office - except for non- 
liarlisnti sijic offices. 

Ill recent times there have 
been ilueo attempts to liberalae 
.'le ad - in I97r), 1990, and now, 
1!1U:1; ihe fust attempt was vo- 
ided by iicpublican President 
Gerald I'ord, the second by 
(loorge [Sush, also Republican. 

Now It appears that a similar 
bill will be sent to Democratic 
['resident Clinton. He says he w^ 
sign a bill very similar to the one 
Mr. Hush rejected. 

However, tills is not necessar- 
ily a partisan matter. The 1990 
"lelorm" bill was passed in the 
House, 333-86. Breaking the 
Mouse vote down another way, 



247 Democrats, 85 Republicans, 
and one independent said yes; 
cwo Democrats and 84 Republi- 
cans said no. 

The proposed new law would 
continue to bar federal and postal 
employees from ruxuung for 
staiewido or federal offices. But 
federal employees would be per- 
mitted to run for both partisan 
and nonpanisan local offices, and 
nonpartisan state offices. 

Members of the Federal Elec- 
tion Commission, which oversees 
the conduct of national electiorvs, 
have been granted their request 
not to be included, in order to 
safeguard their neutrality. 

Sen. John Glenn (D) of Ohio, 
chairman of the Government 
Alfairs Committee, authored and 
submitted an alternative bill in 
the last session and will reintro- 
duce It m the current session, 
according to a member of his 
staff. 

The Glenn bill retains all the 
Hatch Act prohibitions against 
^iovcrnment employees using 
their jobs to influence other 
workers, with criminal penalties 
for violations. 

Americana should carefully 
consider the proposed revisions 
of the Hatch Act, which has 
served the body politic well for 
five decades. 

Bush may well have been right 
when he said that revising the 
Hatch Act "would inevitably lead 
to repoliticizing" of the govern- 
ment bureaucracy. 



131 



BIRHINGHAH NEUS 

CIKHINGHAH, AL 
DAILY 162.342 

TRIDAt 

MAR 25 1993 



144 3UftA£LL£_S 
. aeoi ■=== . b . 



Axing Hatch 

nf a sheriff's race in a rural Alabama 
county, the incumbent came in second. 
Still, with three candidates running and 
no one getting a clear majority, he would 
be in the runoff. 

Between the primary election and that 
runoff, lo a new record may have been es- 
tablished in number of new voters regis- 
tered by the sheriff's friend, the county 
registrar. The sheriff won the runoff 
handily. 

That true story came to mind this weelt 
looking over a Democrat-pushed bill in 
the Senate to revise t he federal Hatch 
Act. 

The act forbids federal employees from 
engaging in most forms of partisan poli- 
tics, including managing, fund-raising or 
working in federal campaigns. 

It was enacted in 1939 to prevent the 
Iloosevelt administration from pressuring 
federal workers into working on political 
campaigns. 

The threat that the gargantuan federal 
work force could be pressured toward 
working for the party in power still exists. 
ll will not vanish simply because those 
who want to dramatically alter the act 
talk about federal workers' rights. 



EDirOrtfAL 



As Fred Wertheimer. president of the 
citizens' lobby Common Cause, wrote to 
Congress last month: "With basic restric- 
tions on partisan activity repealed, no pro- 
cedural or other safeguards exist that will 
be sufficient to protect against subtle 
forms of political favoritism or coercion 
of federal employees." 

Those of a cynical bent might suspect 
that the move to alter the Hatch Act has 
tar less to do with ending injustices, and 
much more to do with the fact that Bill 
Clinton, in a three-person race, got only 43 
percent of the vote in 1992. 

Lo. some of the first things Democrats 
looking to 1996 began pushing when Con- 
gress began its session were a motor-voter 
bill, to help register many new voters who 
most believe would likely vote Demo- 
cratic, and revising the Hatch Act. 

Which party would the federal workers 
be most likely to help should the Hatch 
Act go? A survey by Congressional 
Quarterly found that in the 1990 and 1992 
election cycles, the 21 PACs sponsored by 
federal workers gave $947,000 to Republi- 
can candidates, but J7.4 million to Demo- 
crats. 

The Hatch Act isn't broken. It doesn t 
need fixing. 



132 



A12 Tlmnday. Muxh 4. 1993 



EDITORIAL PAGE 



I III: AKI/.ONA KKI'IIKLK 



wr'-f.rrr- .»-r>c-*i:i-.- ■ •■ 



^i^^^^^vHATCH ACT 'REFORM* 



Politics at work 



IF the proposed reform of the federal 
Hatch Act. now on the congressional 
fast track, is the kind of change to be 
expected from Bill Clinton's Washington, 
Amencans can be excused if they yearn 
for the good old days of gridlock. 

The Hatch Act. for those rusty on 
their poly-sci. was enacted more than a 
half-century ago to protect the public and 
government workers from a politicized 
federal bureaucracy. The rapid expansion 
of the New Deal had been accompanied by 
an exponential growth of the federal work 
force, and political appomtees were 
making concened efTorts to compel federal 
workers into actively supponmg incum- 
bent {Tcliticians and their programs. 

Since its adopuon, the Hatch Act has 
worked pretty much as intended and 
continues to do so. It has msuiated the 
bureaucracy and government workers 
from the ravages of a political spoils 
system, simultaneously keeping the public 
from bemg overwhelmed by the self-inter- 
est of highly pjtnisan public servants. 

In exchange for acceptmg modest 
and prudent restrictions on certain types 
of political activity, federal workers won 
protection from a cml service system that 
goes to great lengths to provide a measure 
of job security uncommon in the pnvate 
seaor. The act prohibits most federal 
employees from active participation in 
political campaigns, runmng for office or 
soliciting political donations from fellow 
workers or the public, though they may 
make volunury contnbutions to political 
causes and candidates. 

According to several recent surveys, 
most rank-and-file federal workers have 
scant interest in modifying the Hatch Act. 



Nonetheless, leaders of several public 
employee umons. including the powerful 
National Association of Letter Carriers, 
want all pohtical restnctions removed. 
Democrats m Congress and some within 
the Clinton administration say they are 
ready to oblige. 

The potenuai for mischief should be 
obvious. As Supreme Coun Justice Byron 
White pomted out some years back when 
the Hatch Act restnctions were unsuccess- 
fully challenged: "It is in the best mterests 
of the country, indeed essential, 
that ... the pohtical influence of federal 
employees on others and on the political 
process should be liimted." 

Joe Vacca, president of the Letters 
Carriers union, has a different opinion. 
Until the Hatch Act is changed, he says, 
federal employees will never win the nght 
to strike. 

Other backers of Hatch Act "reform" 
include all the usual suspects — special 
interest groups and supporters of the 
leviathan sute in and out of Congress. 
They fairly smack their hps at the thought 
of enlistmg the 3.1 million-strong federal 
work force in the endless campaign to 
confiscate whatever tax dollars Washing- 
ton allows the pnvate sector to retain for 
Its own use. 

Even Common Cause, the liberal 
lobby, warns that the proposed change 
"opens the door to implicit coercion and 
abandons the fundamental concept of an 
unpoliticized civil service." Considenng 
the heavy price Amencans pay to fund the 
federal bureaucracy, the least they have a 
nght to expect are pubhc employees who 
serve the public, not narrow panisan 
interests. 



133 



LOS ANGELES TIHES 



L03 ANGELES, CA 
DAILY 

UCDNESDAV 

nftR 3 1993 

■IIS'S 



3i7 
. .oa.o 



S(//^ i 



XM 



An Unwanted Escape Hatch 



Keep federal Civil Service employees clearly and formally above policies 



Federal employees, like alt Amen- 
cam. nave me right lo voie. lo oeiorg 
10 a DOiiucai party and lo maxe 
inonciary contributions to candidates 
Fur 53 years, however, federal em- 
ployees have been wisely barred from 
further political activity. They may 
not serve as officers in a political 
party or manage political campaigns 
or work as volunteers in s candidate's 
campaign office. They may not solicit 
contributions from others for a candi- 
date. And. not least in Imporunce. 
they may not themselves run for 
elected office. 

These restrictions have been the 
law of the land since 1939 when the 
Hatch Xct . named for Sen. Carl Hatch 
C U-N M.). was passed. 

Many federal employees have wel- 
comed the prohibitions. The act ex- 
cuses them from "volunitry" political 
activity that, given their vulnerabili- 
ty to actions by elected officials. 



.-I'.ghl easilv :;? coerced. The law also 
;:reserves pud:;c rejpect (or t.he Civil 
Service by Keeping it clearly and 
farmaiiy apove oouiics. 

But cpposiiion ',0 the Hatch Act has 
never sjosidea !'. has been thrice 
challenged, anc •..'ince upheld, before 
'.he buureme Ccurt. !n 1975 and 1990. 
Congress passed-and Presidents 
Gerald R Forc and George Bush 
vetoed-bills tor :ls repeal. 

Behind the c^.illenges have been 
feder»' employee unions, notably the 
National Assn. of Letter Carriers, 
which have used their political influ- 
ence with Democratic legislators 
against the Hatch Act. 

A great many federal employees 
have been Democrats, and so Demo- 
cratic legislators, '..he merits of the 
case asice. have a partisan reason to 
be sympathetic 

Minority group members are dis- 
proportionately numerous among 



federal employees as well, and one 
among the argtunenu for repealing 
the Hatch Act haa been that n 
reduces minority political power. 
Broadly speaking, the federal em- 
ployees' nghl to an ureducible mini- 
mum of poUUcil acuvliy does need to 
be balanced with the tixptyen' nght 
'.3 be preserved from. In effect, fund- 
ing their own employees' lobbying. 

A new bill to revise the Hatch Act, 
currently before Congrew, would de- 
stroy that balance, going so far as to 
permit employees of the Federal 
Election Commission, which monitors 
enforcement of elecuon lawi, to work 
in electoral campaigns. 

Refinements of the act may well be 
possible, but any proposed changes 
should be scrutinized skeptically. 
This IS a law thai has served the 
public good for half a century. Re- 
pealing It or even seriously weaken- 
ing It should be out of the quesuon. 



134 



?n 



nao 



FRFSNO BEE 

FRFSNO. Ch 
OAILV US. 169 

THIIR8DAV 

mn 18 i99?i 



Hatch Act revisited 



■ Expanding the polrticai rignts of federal 
workers makes sense, but the legislation 

now being considered goes too far. 

j EDITCRIAL 

The Hfltrh Art, PnartpH in 1939 to ^ard 
against a political spoils system ;n feder- 
al employment, denies federal workers 
certain political rights that most other citizens 
take for granted. The act needs to be liberal- 
ized Unfortunately, the bill passed over- 
whelmingly by the House earlier this month 
goes too far. 

In its current form, HR 20, the House Hatch 
Act revision would allow federal employees to 
run for local partisan offices. In most cases 
that seems reasonable. A postal clerk or a 
NASA engineer should be free to run for 
school board or City Council in communities 
where those offices are partisan. Under cur- 
rent rules they can neither run for such otTices 
nor actively campaign for local candidates they 
support. 

But the reform proposal also permits federal 
workers to solicit partisan campaign funds 
from fellow workers and private citizens, to 
manage statewide partisan political campaigns 
and to become officers in political parties. 



These are activities that, in the words of Com- 
mon Cause, the campaign reform organiza- 
tion, "can lead to subtle forms of political fa- 
voritism or coercion of federal workers" — 
and in some instances, it may not even be so 
subtle. No procedural safeguards have ever 
been deviEed that can protect a worker who 
fears his job promotion rests on his willing- 
ness to walk precincts or make campaign con- 
tributions to the public employee union's en- 
dorsed candidate. 

Congress and the president should be clear 
on one thing: It's principally public employee 
unions, not federal workers, who are clamor- 
ing for Hatch Act changes. A 1989 survey of 
federal employees found that only 34 percent 
actually favored Hatch Act reform. But for 
years, their union leaders, who already exer- 
cise considerable political clout through their 
PAC contributions and political endorsements, 
have lobbied strongly for this legislation. 

At local, state and federal levels, public em- 
ployee unions have already built powerful po- 
litical machines that exercise enormous power. 
The Hatch Act revisions contained in HR 20 
will expand the power of federal unions to in- 
fluence elections and legislation and to coerce 
political compliance from their members. 
They've already got enough clout. 



135 



I OUELrtMO DAILY 
PEPORTFR-IIERALP 

'■^"IL- -c..02r 



flAR in 1333 



■ OS 



Who gains from 
destruction ol-Hatch? 

Congress would be foolhard y to dcat roy the Hatch Act . 
Yet the U.S. House has already acted to dimmish its 
effectiveness, and the Senate may act before the end 
of March. Its fate in the White House is uncertain. 

Congress passed the Hatch Act in 1939 to restrict the po- 
litical activities of government employees. Political ap- 
pomtees in the Works Progress Admmistration had coerced 
WPA workers to contribute to specific candidates as a 
means to perpetuate the agency. 

Most federal workers today see no reason to change the 
law. The most recent survey shows that Hatch Act changes 
have support among only 30 percent of federal workers. 

Federal unions, however, are salivating at the prospect of 
a diluted Hatch Act. Unions, with the ability to harness 
huge numbers of federal workers into political activity on 
behalf of the union, would have tremendous clout. Imagine 
trying to reform the federal bureaucracy — as President 
CUnton wants to do — with politically charged public em- 
ployees to contend with. 

In addition to protecting federal employees from im- 
proper political arm twisting, the Hatch Act serves to pro- 
tect average citizens. Consider the effect on the citizen who 
is audited by day by the IRS, and approached during non- 
working hours by the same IRS agent for a political contri- 
bution. It's not legal now, but it would be under the House 
revisions. 

Or consider the plight of groups of citizens petitioning a 
government official for relief only to find themselves on the 
quid pro quo mailing list of the official's favorite political 
cause. Subtle pressure, yet legal. 

Changing a law that has protected citizens and govern- 
ment workers for 54 years from improper political arm- 
twisting would seriously diminish the ability of Congress 
and the president to govern. 



136 



Rockv Mountain News 
iDenver, CO) 



March ~, 1993 



Bu^^Hk 



trs 



The maiming of a good law 



THEISSU S i 

Hatcll«0|TO'. 
f acesiawrtiaul- 



The venerable Hatch 
Act — the 1939 law 
that keeps parusan poli- 
tics from im'estmg the 
federal work force — is 
OUR VIEW: about to get overhaiued. 

A bad move Believe it. The House 

voted 333-86 to remove 

many Hatch restraints, half the Republicans 
concurring with ail the Democrats. The 
Senate is pruned to follow suit. President 
Clinton favors revision. Yet the odds are 
great that the public will ultimately suffer. 

At the gut level, proponents of changing 
Hatch make an attracuve argument, namely 
that federal workers, like other Americans, 
should be able to engage freely in party 
politics on their own time. 

Yes. But the question is whether individ- 
uals should be required to waive such liber- 
ties when they accept employment in the 
civil service — a pubhc trust that ought to 



be free from even perceptions of parusan 
slant. We believe they should. 

Under the just-passed House bill, civil 
service and postal employees could run lor 
election to local office, manage poiiucal 
campaigns at all levels and raise campaign 
money. Agam, all of this acuvity would be 
banned in the work place. 

Yet this proviso seems insufficient. Could 
the GS-7 who worked his heart out for Pany 
X dunng evenings and weekends faithfully 
execute the policies of a president from 
Party Y? Or would partisan loyalty tempt 
sabotage of those policies? Would federal 
workers, their unions empowered by a 
surge of activism, focus on job performance 
— or on pay and perks? 

These questions may not disturb the 
president and most Congress members. But 
we bet they disturb millions of Amencans. 
who have been well served by the Hatch 
Act's obligatory nonparusansiup. 



137 



69 



0URAH60 HERALD 

0URM4O0. CO 
DAILY 7,232 

UE0IK8OAV 

MR 10 1993 



HI. 



Don't weaken the Hatch Act 



The Hatch Act, when passed by Congress 
in 1939, was designed to protect civil ser- 
vants, whose numbers were rapiclK iru i c.is- 
ing under FDR's New Deal, from poliucal 
interierence. 

It has worked well, bv and large. 

Under the act, federal employees are 
prohibited from partisan political acuvm-. 
In turn, they have the protection of civil 
service so that when administrations 
change, their jobs remain secure. 

Today, in the name of free speech, there 
is a move in Congress to weaken the Hatch 
Act. Proponents of H.R. 20. designed to 
amenfl the act, say that it limits the rights of 
federal employees. They should be able to 
run for ntfice, solicit political contributions 
and, in general, behave as private citizens 
do politically, the argument goes. 

"Wait a minute," sav opponents of the 
proposed change, "You want a fellow woi k- 
ing for the IRS auditing your tax return 
coming over in the evening asking for a 
campaign contribution for one of his bud- 
dies in the servicer" 

It's an argument worthy of thought. 

Fear of a politicized bodvof ciNil servants 
has existed from the beginning of the 



republic. ■■'" 

Thomas [cfferson opposed electioneer- 
iiic bv federal workers. He said u was "in- 
consistent with the Consutution. ' 

Hatch has been challenged three times 
before the Supreme Court since its passage. 

That came about because in Depression- 
ridden Kentucky a number of federal em- 
ployees were pressured to support, finan- 
cially and otherwise, the re-election bid of a 
U. S. senator. After a series of news stories 
told of the coercion and fraud, Congress 
acted. 

Sunevs of federal employees show that 
the ovenvhclming majoritv like the protec- 
tion of the Hatch act. Most belong, how- 
ever, to unions and union leadership wants 
the partisan advantage. 

President Clinton has said he wants to 
rrdiirc the federal work force through attri- 
uon by 100,000 over four years. He will 
never accomplish that goal, nor will any 
other president, if the Hatch Act is 
weakened and the public employees unions 
become political machines. 

Any belief in a bureaucrat as a public 
servant is gone. 



138 



UATERBURy 
REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN 

UATERBURV, CT 
DAILY 60,006 

MONOAV 

HAR 8 1993 



83 



Si//^^IL£'S 



ebi 



PL 



Hatch Act attack 



For more than 50 years, ihe 
iiaich. Act ha5 restrained over- 
zealous federal employees from 
promoting personal interests by se- 
verely limiting their active partici- 
pation in political campaigns. 

Too, the -bill has protected fed- 
eral workers from the demanding 
political and union bosses who 
would coerce them into participat- 
ing in political causes to keep their 
jobs. 

The 1939 bill, sponsored by Sen. 
Carl Hatch of New Mexico, has 
been a perennial target of lawmak- 
ers scouring for new ways to keep 
their grips on power. 

This year is no different. 

With little fanfare, and by voice 
vote, the House Post Office and 
Civil Service Commiitcc approved 
on Jan. 27 a proposal ofiercu b\ 
committee chief Bill Clay, D-Mo.. 
that would make the Hatch law al- 
most meaningless. 

It passed the House of Repre- 
sentatives last week on a 333-86 
vote. 

Rep. Clay's idea is to allow civil 
servants and postal workers to do 



- ■ . T -^ t.. 

almost whatever they desire in the 
political arena as long as they do it 
away from the office. 

Permitted activities would in- 
:!ude running for office, raising 
funds and otherwise helping candi- 
dates get elected. 

Republicans have succeeded in 
watering down the bill somewhat. 
If the bill becomes law, Federal 
Election Commission employees 
still could not participate in parti- 
san activities, and federal workers 
still could not aspire for elected 
federal posts. 

Still, the proposal removes many 
barriers now preventing federal 
workers and unions from using 
their collective power to influence 
elections, legislation and programs 
pcnelicial to their own financial 
and philosophical ends. 

Succinctly, the bill would create 
a de facto lobby few would dare 
cross. 

Giving the bureaucracy and 
coercive unions more clout than 
they already possess is a danger 
not to be lightly dismissed. 



139 



TUESDAY. MARCH 2. 1993 



^c 10asl|ington cTuncs 



The Hatch Act's common cause 



Say rhe Internal Revenue Sen'tce is auditine vnur 
;ax returns tor the i;ast re'.v vears. ana vour 
stomacn is alreadv aninn rhns at ine nrnsDcct. 
Imagine the acronarics it vnuid rertnrr: ii -^.c 
IRS agent hanaling tnat rerum narpencu tn stnn dv the 
house one dav and say. "Hi. I'm tne Recuolican inr the 
Democratic) precinct chairman, and I Aonaer if you 
wouidn t mind just putting tnis nice anractjMe bign for 
the parry in your fnsnt yard where everyone can see 
It." What would you say? 

That's what Rep. Frank Wolf wanted proponents of 
so-called Hatch Act reform to answer in debate last 
week. It's an unponant question. Cnder exjstmg Hatch 
Act laws prohibiting partisan political activnry among 
federal employees, that kind of scenano couldn't hap- 
pen. But the reform would eliminate many of those 
prohibmons. and the danger is that Amencans may 
somedav have to answer that question on their own. far 
from tne bnght lights of Congress. oacK m tne shadows 
wnere political coercion occurs, 

Mr Wolf didn't set much of an answer V'.Tiat ne cnt 
was an unaoashed artemm to ram tne reiorm tnrouen 
the House without so much as a ^mattenne or debate. 
Democrats sought a gag rule that ivnuld have pre- 
vented any amendments to the legislation but lost when 
enough lawmakers decided thev wanted to take a 
closer look at the measure. The bill is likelv to receive 
overwhelming approval from the whole House in a 
vote as early as this week, but the gag is going to have 
to come off to do it. 

Proponents of H.R. 20. notablv Rep. ^^■illiam Clay 
say reform is necessary because the current statute 
denies goverment employees political rights enjoyed 
by pnvate citizens. Among other things, it would allow 
them to run for office, solicit campaign contnbuoons 
and. well, ask taxpayers to put up parn- signs in their 
front yards. And why not ? 



Because from the earliest davs of this nauon. people 
'■ave unaerstood the inherent dangers oi politicizing a 
"ederai wnrK force mat is supposea to be carr-'ing tne 
iisnes nf '.nters in nonpartisan fashion, Thomas Jef- 
ferson, whom President Clinton professes to aomire. 
opposed federal electioneering by federal worKers. 
^aying it was "inconsistent with the Cc.-.3titution ana 
his duues to it." Subsequent presidents have endorsed 
his view, along with the Supreme Court and most fed- 
eral workers. A 1989 survey by the Ment Systems 
Protection Board found that most workers like the 
Hatch Act just the way it is. Only 32 percent wanted 
■reform ' to weaken it. They like the protection it af- 
fords them from the pamsan agenda of union ofTiciais 
and government supenors. 

Depression-era government employees were less 
fortunate. Some of those working on New Deal pro- 
grams in Kentucky were threatened with the loss of 
their jobs if they did not contnbute tinanciallv or oth- 
erwise to the re-election erfon of a US. senator ,A 
Pulitzer Pnze-winning senes of news stories laid out 
: he whole snrrv mess, and in 1939 Congress inrmaiizea 
prohibitions against electioneenng by government em- 
ployees. So It has remained until now. 

Federal employees are not banned from politics 
They can vote, make contnbutions to campaigns and 
belong to political parties. Anything more than that is 
a problem. Says Common Cause. "Repeal of the Hatch 
.\ct's basic protections, as proposed in H,R. 20. will 
increase the potential for wdespread abuse and open 
the way for implicit coercion against which there can 
be no real protection.' 

When liberal interest groups can make common 
cause with conservanves like Frank Wolf on an issue 
like this one. it ought to give pause to lawmakers trying 
;o rush through "reform'" before anyone notices. Now 
everyone is on nouce: Don't repeal the Hatch Act. 



140 



OCALh STAR-BANNEk 

OCALA, FL 
DAILV »5.724 

UEDNESDAr 

MAR 24 1995 

Keep act intact 

For half a century, the Hatch Act has prohibit- 
ed federal employees from taking active roles in 
partisan poltics. 

To ease a restriction that has worked success- 
fully in behalf of the federal workers themselves 
and the general public would be a damaging mis- 
take. Yet the House nas pulled the rug from under 
the Hatch Act. 

The Senate should reiuse to go along with the 
lower chamber s action, that would open the door 
to federal employees serving as officers of a polit- 
ical party, soliciting contributions for partisan 
political purposes or running as partisan candi- 
dates for public office. 

If the Senate does vote to gut the act. President 
Clinton should refuse to sign the legislation, al- 
though frankly his close ties to Big Labor leave 
little hope of this happening. Union leaders are 
anxious to gain political control over the nearly 3 
million federal workers. 

Repealing the act will open the door for the 
rampant abuses that resulted in its enactment in 
1939. Before the act was passed, many govern- 
ment employees supposedly while working for the 
public were actively involved in actions designed 
to perpetuate the power of the ruling clique and 
the individual office-holder they worked for. 

Federal employees were forced to perform 
endless hours of political services or to make po- 
litical contributions they couldn't afford under 
pressure of losing their jobs. 

Surely, our nation does not want to return to 
such shenanigans. The Hatch Act protects federal 
workers and the public alike. It is to the credit of 
many of those workers that they recognize the 
value of keeping the act intact. A recent survey by 
the federal Merit Systems Protection Board re- 
sulted in 68 percent of the participating employ- 
ees supporting the Hatch Act. 

Employment and promotions with the federal 
table of organization should not depend on politi- 
cal preference. Federal employees should and 
must be free from pressure to perform political 
chores. 



141 



^EU5-jOURNAL 

DAYTONA EEmCH T. 
DAILt =3.339 

FRIDAY 

MAR 5 1993 



Suf^ i 



■IIS'S 



TH 



:et3k 



Don't mess with Hatch Act 



The L'.S. House of Representanves 
".'oted overwheirmneiy Wednesaav 
to weaKen a law that has snielded 
federal worKers from political pressures 
ior more than half a century. 

The Hatch Act was enacted in 1939 to 
protect employees from bemg coerced 
mto working for poiiticai campaigns or 
shaken down for contributions. M- 
though it has been a source of frustra- 
-uon to federal employees' unions and to 
'ftederai workers who wish to get in- 
j^olved in political issues, the law has 
done its job of shielding federal workers 
from undue political pressures. It has 
•preserved a politically neutral civil serv- 
ice. 

The changes proposed in the House- 
passed bill would allow federal employ- 
ees to run for nonpanisan political of- 
fice — county council, for example 
— manage poiiticai campaigns and col- 
lect political donauons. 

Supponers of the bill say it also would 
Toughen penalties for misuse of authon- 
ty and improper soliciting of political 
contributions. And no political work 
could be done on the job. 

Even so. by openmg the door to broad- 
er political acuon. the bill creates the 



EDITORIALS 



potennal for widespread abuse. 

TOO MANY pnvate employees are 
pressured mto contnbutmg to PACs. 
Now federal employees will feel that 
pressure, too. and a good deal more 
smce their livelihoods usually are af- 
fected more directly by the decisions of 
those holding political oCBce. 

It is all too easy to see how an employ- 
ee would feel coerced by his supervi- 
sor's political activities even if no oven 
threat is made or donation demanded. 

Too often the o£F-the-job political activ- 
ities allowed under these changes could 
find their way mto the workplace. The 
line between the two is often more ap- 
parent than real. 

The protections of the Hatch .Act 
should not be weakened. In this time of 
ever-more-expensive political cam- 
paigns, we may e.xpect that federal 
workers would be subjected to all man- 
ner of new fund-raising pressure, both 
subtle and overt. Now. even more than 
in the past, the Hatch Act needs to be 
kept strong. The Senate should take a 
much harder look at this proposal. 



142 



AUGUSTA CHRONICLE 

AUGUSTA. GA 
SAT 4 SUN ^3,006 

SATURDAY 

3AN 30 1993 



267 
. .ebk 



Ba/^ i 



'll£'S 



XA 



Let's keep the Hatch Act 



The U.S. Senate's Governmental Af- 
fairs Committee has hastily scheduled 
a Feb. 17 hearing to 'revise ' the 54- 
year-old HatchAgt. 

This law wisely bars some 3 million 
federal and postal workers from "ac- 
tive" participation in political cam- 
paigns. (However, they have always 
been able to vote, contribute money to 
candidates and volunteer for campaign 
work in off-hours. ) 

As this is being written, no actual re- 
peal bill has been introduced. That 
means it's impossible to analyze and 
prepare comments on legislation that 
nobody has seen! 

So the reason for the Democratic 
proponents' tactic is simple: Catch the 
public off guard. They also realize 
there s no U.S. attorney general in 
place to present testimony against any 
precipitous gutting of the law. 

The bill that President Bush suc- 
cessfully vetoed in 1990 would have let 
those 3 million workers hold partisan 
offices and solicit money from fellow 
employees for federal workers' politi- 



cal action committees iPACs). But do 
taxpayers really want their public em- 
ployees transformed into party hacks 
and solicitors? 

Any civil servant pressured into giv- 
ing money to. say, a left-wing PAC 
would understandably be reluctant to 
file a cnminal complaint against their 
peers, or a superior. It puts their job in 
jeopardy — which is why the Hatch Act 
was passed in the first place. 

Repeal advocates complain that the 
act infringes on "free speech." But the 
New York Times editorially warns that 
"creating a climate in which govern- 
ment employees are likely to feel com- 
pelled to engage in politics also offends 
free speech." 

There is no grass-roots clamor for 
repeal: indeed, the lack of interest tes- 
tifies to the support the law has re- 
ceived from most federal civil servants 
and the general public. 

Georgians and South Carolinians 
fearful of a re-politicized civil service 
had better start expressing opposition 
to their U.S. senators. 



143 



ROME NEUS-TRIBUNE 

ROME, GA 
DAILY I SUNDAY 20.0*0 

SUNnAY 

MAR 14 1993 






BUF^LLS'S 



xw 



cDITOriiAl 



Celebrating 150 years of service: 1843-1993 



HI I \looiiL-v 111. l.J.tu- 
Don limj4LT.s 
Vice HrcMdeiu. .\vws 



.uhl l'ul)li.-,hLr 

i'lc-rrc-Kcni.' .N'oih 
Edtiorul Pdue Editor 



OK'ing corrupt practices 



kONGRESS and Presidenl 
^Clinton wiil soon officially al- 
low Fedcrul Corrupt Prac- 



Uces. 

Doesn't sound very good, does it? 
Which is why they'd rather ev«Y, 
one just talk about how "the Hatcn 
Act of 1939" is going to be revised to 
allow federal employees to become 
actively involved in politics and 
political campaigns. 'That law i.s 
also known as the FvJ-.ai Corrupt 
Practices Act. 

The House has already sent this 
stinkball to the Senate, which is 
expected to approve it once again. 
Both bouses have done so twice 
before, only to see both efforts 
vetoed by Presidents Gerald Ford 
and George Bush. However, Clin- 
ton has no qualms at all about al- 
lowing the old political machinerj- 
of yesteryear to crank up again. 

Some liberal columnists are now 
touting Clinton as the 'new FDR" 
and maybe he is, if this is the lit- 
mus test The Hatch Act was or- 
iginally passed because President 
Franklin Delano Roosevelt was 
widely accused of trying to build an 
army of federal employees to work 
for his re-election. 

THE PROPOSED revision is not 
all bad. It would allow federal em- 
ployees to run for purely local of- 
fices, such as school board, but not 
for state or federal positions. One 
sees no reason to disallow 
participation m local affairs simply 
because one works for another gov- 
ernment 



As to the rest of it: P U. It wouia 
permit some J million federal 
workers in the rank and file to or- 
ganize political lund-raisers. sol- 
icit contributions, endorse can- 
didates, knock on doors, hand out 
literature and all the rest — so long 
as they do it on their own time, of 
course. 

While the bill does include penal- 
ties for "misuse of authority," the 
real problem is that there is an 
implied use of authority inherent in 
allowmg such activities. 

"Hi! I'm Bill Aplenty and I work 
for the IRS. Would you care to con- 
tribute something to President 
Clintons re-election efforf" He s 
standing at your door, he probably 
knows your name, he can look you 
and your tax returns up at the ot- 
fice. Care to say no to him? 

IN ADDITION, creating such an 
army of special-interest troops 
(interested in their own 
self-preservation) is likely to wipe 
out any hopes of ".'ver reducing the 
federal delicii. V,'hat congressman 
is going to vote for federal employ- 
ee layoffs, agamst salary boosts 
jnd in favor of benefit reductions 
when he knows it assures that, in 
the next election, thousands of fed- 
eral workers will be knocking on 
doors to help his opponent? 

And then there's Joe Vacca, 
president of the National Associa- 
tion of Letter Carriers, who says 
Hatch must be revised so that fed- 
eral workers can mobilize political- 
ly to push for the next step: Win- 
nmg the right to strike. 



Government workers strik 
against their employers, 
people of the United States, is 
open invitation to national chs 
That very thouuht .should make 
boss lire the wnoie lot of them. . 
President Reagan did with the 
controllers. 

If federal workers, as a gn 
fairly well paid and with g 
benefits, don't like their jobs t. 
have the same choice as the pec 
paying the taxes lo give them tt 
salaries: go look for another 
they like better. 

.Nor should federal workers 
very enthused about gettmg i 
politics. Indeed, a 1989 survey 
the Merit Systems Protect 
Board found only 32 percent fav 
ing a revision of the Hatch Act. 

.MOST OF THE REST apparen 
likea the idea ot not havmg th 
arms twisted to kirk into campai 
kitties or getti.ng hints that th 
might lose favor or promotions 
they didn't assist some politico 
lain office. 

And. needless 'o say, if fede 
olfices turn into open political f 
urns there s goinK to be some reli 
tance to talk against or v( 
against the pow.'rs-that-be. is 
there ' 

Consider this the iirst campai 
move by Clinton and the I 
mocrats for the 1994 and 1996 el 
tions. It's a blatant attempt to Ic 
up 3 million votes as a starU 
point, tap into a new source ■ 
contributions and draft a host 
campaign workers. 

These were corruptmg practic 
when the government banned the 
in 1939. They are no less corrupt 
1993. 



144 



iiNTAGOAPH 
ELCOMINGTON, I. 

MOHOAV 

HAR 1 1993 



'%b 



■LL£S 



Hatch Act limits 
shouldn't be lifted 

House Democrats were thwarted in their 
attempt to push through modifications of the 
Hatbh Act wifh little debate or opportunity 
'to amend the proposal. 

However, the issue is expected to anse 
again. 

: The Hatch Act's restrictions on the in- 
volvement of federal employees in partisan 
politics have served a useful purpose for 
more than 50 years. The Hatch Act has 
helped keep politics out of federal agencies. 

; Civil servants are supposed to serve the 
public, not political parties. Taxpayers 
should not have to second guess the motives 
of government workers carrying out their 
duties. 

The appearance of impropriety can be 
almost as damaging as misconduct It can 
destroy trust in government institutions. 

Yes, the prohibitions on running for office 
and actively working m political campaigns 
do somewhat limit the rights of federal em- 
ployees. However, that must be balanced 
with the rights of citizens to have impartial 
government agencies. 

In addition, the Hatch Act protects federal 
workers from being forced into supporting a 
partisan political cause. 

: Proposed revisions in the Hatch Act would 
prohibit federal employees from coercing 
other employees to make donations or en- 
gage in political activity. However, subtle 
hints and implied favoritism would be difii- 
cult to police. 

The heavy-handed manner in which 
House Democrats tried to rush through 
these changes should sound alarm bells. If 
this is such a good idea, then why was the 
Democratic leadership reluctant to engage 
in full, open debate and allow consideration 
of alternatives? 

The Hatch Act has worked well. Leave it 
alone. 



145 



mE INDIANAl'OLIS NEWS 



••■"{« 



'Omn*fol!S.:n 



The [ndianapolis News 
(Indianapolis, [N'1 

Marcn 2, 1993 



'<:r 



■10\ 



How embarrassing 



House Democrats were embar- 
rassed last week when they failed in 
an attempt to ramrod through a mea- 
sure to substantially gut the Hatch 
Act. The act prevents federal employ- 
ees from engaging tn partisan political 
acOvlUes. 

The Democrats should have been 
embarrassed to use a parliamentary 
ploy In an effort to shut off debate or 
the introduction of any amendments 
to the bill. 

But It will be even more embarrass- 
ing for them to pass this measure. It 
would undo an Important safeguard to 
a growing federal bureaucracy that 
has stood for nearly a half century. 

The House vote fell three votes 
short of a two-thirds majority to pass 
the bill under rules that foreclosed the 
Intnxjucdon of any amendments or 
debate on amendments. It is expected 
to be reconsidered under normal rules 
that will allow amendments to t)e con- 
sidered and require only a simple ma- 
jority for passage. 

A similar measure easily cleared 
Congress in 1990 but was wisely ve- 
toed by President Bush. President 
Clinton, however, courting the labor 
vote, has promised to sign It. 

The legislation will eliminat e Hatch 
Act restrictions involving nearly 3.2 
million federal employees and postal 
workers that prohibit them from en- 
gaging In partisan political activities, 
running for political office, managing 
political campaigns and raising cam- 
paign contributions. 

Congress originally passed the 
Hatch Act In 1939 amidst the New 
Deal growth In federal government 
and revelations of political coercion 
within the Works Progress Adminis- 
tration. In addition to curbing political 
conuptlon. the Hatch Act has served 
to an extent in keep the federal bu- 



reaucracy from becoming a self-per- 
petuating lobbying force for its own 
expansion. 

Many federal employees welcome 
the protections of the Hatch Act be- 
cause they insulate them from politi- 
cal coercion, and they want to see the 
restrictions retained. 

Republicans, who objected to at- 
tempts to ramrod the bill through, 
have sought In particular to amend 
the bill so It would not affect federal 
law enforcement and Intelligence 
employees. 

Rep. Frank R. Wolf. R-Va.. asked. 
"Would It be appropriate for an assis- 
tant U.S. attorney, who Is preparing a 
case against a prominent political fig- 
ure for corruption, to be permitted to 
work on the campaign of that politi- 
cian's opponent?" 

But his more salient observaUon 
concerned the overall thrust of this 
attempt to weaken the Hatch Act. 
This blU Is a flawed bill." he said. 
This bill would cause the politicizing 
of the federal work force. The rule of 
thumb will be whatever is permitted 
will be what Is expected." 

House Democrats should think 
twice before further embarrassing 
themselves by passing this bill. The 
Senate, which has a more restrictive 
version of the measure, should also 
consider whether It really wants to 
undo safeguards that have worked for 
a half of a century. 

And President Clinton, who railed 
against special Interest lobbying 
groups In his State of the Union Ad- 
dress, should seriously considered 
whether he wants to sign such a mea- 
sure. 

It would establish a 3.2 million 
member lobbying organization with an 
agenda to Increase federal spending 
and expand the federal govemmenL 



146 



...^ Iowa press 
cupping Bureau 

Dm Mom**. lA 503OT 

Don't scrap the Hatch Act 

Keep partisan politics out 
of federal civil service. 

One of the messages of last falls eiec- the Hatch Act would allow federal employ- 

tion was that people are fed up with ees to work in political campaigns or to so- 

insider pnvUege. They're tired of a hat campaign funds m off-duty hours, l iic 

system that seems to work more for the public is asked to believe that i.-acrai 

benefit of the servants than of those they worKers can be fierce political partisans ;it 

are supposed to serve. night, then change into completely non- 

But if Congress got the message, you sure partisan avil servants by aay . Hogwasn. 
couldn't tell it by Wednesday s vote m the The unions seeking to gut the Hatcn Act 
House. The vote was to gut the Hatch Act. argue that employees are denied their 
the law that resmcts political acnvity by -nght'* to be acave m polincs. No. the em- 
federal employees. The effect will be to tilt pioyees voluntarily agreed to give up parti- 
the system a little more m favor of the m- ^^ politics when they accepted govem- 
siders — in this case federal employees. n,ent employment. In exchange, they were 
The voce is the payoff from years of lob- gjyg^ (^g protections of the civil-service 
bying by federal-employee unions^e gystem. 

Senate is expected to follow suit, and Presi- ^^y, ^^ unions want it both ways. They 

dent Clinton is expected to sign the change ^a^t to be able to take part m polincs. and 

into law. When that happens, a long-stand- ^^ ^^ ^^^ rewards that can come from 

ing bargain between federal employees gjyy,g campaign help to the politicians 

and the publicwill have been shattered. ^^^ ^^ ^^^^ salaries and vote on their 

The bargain was this: The public granted {,^^^^£-,£5^ But they want to keep their civil- 

to federal emptoyees more protection than ^^^ protections, too. 

ordinary workers get. They can t be fu^ The public shouldn t stand for tnat 

arbiu^nly, and they enjoy other protec- ^j^g^ ^eal. If federal employees want 

uons generally not available in pnvate- ^^^ benefits that they can gam from taking 

sector employmwit. oart m politics, they ought to be willing to 

in exchangejhe federal ovU semcejs P^ ^ Se^uabmtie? u^jhey should sur- 

expected to perform its job wth nonpar^- ^^ ^ avU-sennce proteaion and go 

san professionabsm. To avoid any hmt of ^^^^^^ ^j ^ ^ ^ ^^_ 

poUtics. federal employees are forbidden ''^^J" vet evSyone should stick with 

to nm for office, to take acnvepanm^- ^f.^^J^^aL shield avil servants from 

pWLi^niSs. The proposed guttmg of tarn the integrity of federal service. 



147 



3UN0AV S'iN-,-:URNAL 

LCWISTON, Mr 
SUNDAY 4.1,625 



MflR 14 1993 

3UPA £LL£S 

66 '■= PI 

ec. . 



Keep Hatch Act 

When federal workers say they're "Hatched," 
they're not talking about their mode of entry into this 
world. They mean they are prohibited from running 
for partisan political office, managing campaigns or 
raising money for partisan candidates — activities 
forbidden under the H^ciiAC.t passed in 1939. 

Congress is on the verge of "unhatching" federal 
workers. The House passed a bill that guts the Hatch 
Act earner this mont':. ''^e Senate will hold hearings 
in April. 

If a bill passes both nouses, as a similar one did in 
1990, odds are that President Bill Clinton will sign it, 
say Washington obsen.'ers. President Bush vetoed 
the 1990 version. 

Overhauling the Hatch Act would be a senous 
mistake. The law protects federal employees from 
being coerced by their unions, supen;isors or 
colleagues into actively supporting political 
candidates. It also protects citizens from intimidation 
by bureaucrats administering government programs. 

The bill that passed in the House would allow 
federal employees to run 'or local office, manage 
political campaigns and solicit contributions on their 
own !:me. But suppose an Internal Revenue Service 
employee asks you for a contribution while your 
return is being audited. Does it really matter if the 
request occurs during or after business hours? 

The argument that employees would be protected 
from arm-twisting doesn't wash either. Coercion 
doesn't have to be blatant to be effective. Subtle 
means, a little "friendlv persuasion" shall we say, can 
be used to pressure reluctant employees Into making 
contributions or stuffing envelopes. 

Some federal employees resent being "Hatched." 
But many others like having a hassle-free excuse for 
not getting actively involved in politics. Federaj 
employees are still free lo vote, belong to political 
parties and make contributions, .What they're not free 
to do currently is intimidate fellow employees or 
citizens into supporting candidates. That's how it 
should remain. 



148 



BANGOR DAILY NEwS 

OANGOR, MC 
DAILY 77,i91 

TUCCDAV 

MAR 16 1993 



rues 



. eb. 



Hatch Act repeal 



WFiile most of the country was preoc- 
cupied with the Clinton budget, base clo- 
sures and the prospect of higher 
energy taxes, a determined grouD oi 
congressmen pusned through a Dill that 
would reqove important provisions of 
tjTeJjatch Act, '.vhich for 53 years nas 
protected the federal system and its 
workers from the consequences of en- 
tanglement in partisan politics 

Although opponents of the act believe 
this is an excellent time to attack the 
act — pushing amendments through a 
new Congress and past a new president 
— just the opposite is true 

Given the unprecedented level ol 
public unhappiness with elected officials 
and widespread cynicism about 
government generally, an assault on the 
precepts of the Hatch Act. wrong under 
any circumstances, would be a serious 
mistake. In this political climate, it 
could create a destructive backlash that 
would serve no interest, and possibly 
place additional restrictions on political 
participation by federal employees. 

The Hatch Act. named for Sen. Carl 
Hatch. D-New Mexico, was passed in 
1939 in reaction to complaints and stor- 
ies about New Deal workers who had 
been forced to work in behalf of politi- 
cal incumbents. The country had ad- 
dressed the worst aspects of the spoils 
system more than 50 years earlier, but 
it was clear that the federal govern- 
ment and its employees needed ad- 
ditional protection from the pressures 
of partisan politics. 

Federal workers retained the right to 
vote, to belong to political parties and 



make monetary contributions to candi- 
dates, but under Hatch they were pro- 
hibited from holding party otfices. 
working m campaign offices or manag- 
ing political campaigns. They can t so- 
licit funds from others in behalf of 
candidates, or run for elected office. 

That's a lot to give up. but the return 
is substantial: Workers cant be pressed 
into service in behalf of politicians, or 
risk losing their jobs. In the Opinion of 
Common Cause, it "strikes an appro- 
priate balance between the federal 
workers ability to participate in politi- 
cal activities and the public's right to 
fair and impartial administration of 
.government." 

The Hatch Act has been challenged 
three times, but upheld on each occa- 
sion by the .'Supreme Court, In its 1973 
decision, Justice Byron White observed 
that It was "m the best interest of the 
country (that) ... the political influence 
of federal employees on others and on 
the political process should be limited." 

Repeal efforts that made it through 
Congress were vetoed twice, once in 
1973 by President Ford and again in 
1990 by President Bush. The House this 
year approved of its repeal; the Senate 
was awaiting appointment of a new at- 
torney general before making a 
decision. 

The Senate should stand firm against 
gutting the Hatch Act. which despite its 
cumbersome rules and administration, - 
has provided this country with protec- \ 
tion against the partisan politicizing of 
its federal work force. 



149 



TELEGRAM i GAZETTE 

WORCESTER, M« 
DAILY li4,747 

UEDNESOAV 

riAR 10 1993 

242 , 



Save the Hatch Act 



PK 



50-year-old law protects federal workers 



The I^tch A.ct, enacted more 
than 50 years ago, was designed 
to ensure that the federal bu- 
reaucracy IS administered in a 
fair and impartial manner 
through protection of employees 
from partisan political pressure. 
This law has served the nation 
well. 

The 1939 act bans such polit- 
ical activity by federal workers as 
running for federal or state off- 
ice, organizing fund-raisers and 
publicly endorsing candidates. 

.•\ny attempt to weaken the 
Hatch Act opens the door to im- 
plicit coercion and abandons the 
concept of an unpoliticized civil 
service. It increases the potential 
for widespread abuse, favoritism 
and intimidation. 

Although surveys show most 
federal employees oppose weak- 
ening the law, the politicians and 
public employee unions find the 
prospect of injecting partisan- 
ship into the federal work place 
irresistible. 

Twice during the last four 
years. Congress passed bills to 
water down the Hatch Act but 
ran into vetoes by President 
Bush. 

Last week, the House again 
voted to emasculate the law by 
allowing some 3 million federal 
and postal employees to support 
political candidates, organize po- 
litical fund-raisers, even run for 
"nonpartisan" state offices. 

These changes would make 
employees pawns in the hands of 
politicians. People in Central 
Massachusetts who may doubt 
the need for shielding workers 
from political intimidation 
should remember how Worcester 
County Sheriff John M. Flynn 
dealt with jail employees who 
backed his opponent He demot- 



ed them. 

"We believe the current 
Hatch Act stnkes an appropnate 
balance between the federal 
worker's ability to participate in 
political activities and the pub- 
lic's right to fair and impartial 
administration of government," 
says Common Cause, the nonpar- 
tisan watchdog organization. 

Upholding the constitu- 
tionality of the Hatch Act the 
U.S. Supreme Court stated: "It is 
in the best interest of the coun- 
try, indeed essential, that federal 
service snouid depend upon mer- 
itonous performance rather tnan 
political service." 

We f\illy agree with both 
statements. 

The Senate should reject the 
latest attempt to strip federal em- 
ployees of much-needed protec- 
tion. If it does not. President 
Clinton should exercise his veto 
power. 



150 









;a-2« 



r3STCW.f.V 



Boston Herald 
(Boston, !!A1 

March S, 1993 






Hatch Act endangered 



Feeling their oats after 
last year's election, the un- 
ions which represent federal 
workers are moving to gut 
th e Hatch Act. T his attempt 
to inject politics into the fed- 
eral workplace must be de- 
feated. 

Last week, the House voted 
333 to 86 to allow government 
employees to openly endorse 
candidates for public office 
and even to organize fimd- 
raisers — on their own time, 
sponsors assure us. If the 
Senate concurs, all that will 
be left of Hatch is the prohi- 
bition against federal 
workers actually running 
for partisan office. 

The Hatch Act has always 
been a necessary protection 
against politicization of the 
federal workforce. It was en- 
acted in the 1930s, after con- 
siderable arm-twisting of 
government workers to en- 
list them in electoral causes. 

U.S. Supreme Court Jus- 
tice Byron White, a Demo- 
cratic nominee to the bench, 
put the matter well: "It is in 



the best interest of the coun- 
try, indeed essential, 
that. . . the political in- 
fluence of federal employees 
on others and on the political 
process should be limited." 

Federal workers them- 
selves perceive the utility of 
Hatch, which protects them 
from forcible political re- 
cruitment In a 1989 poll of 
government workers by the 
Merit Systems Protection 
Board, only 32 percent fa- 
vored weakening the law. 

If President Clinton is seri- 
ous about getting federal 
spending under control, he 
will have to tackle the bu- 
reaucracy. Giving federal 
unions more political clout 
will make that task next to 
impossible. 

The Hatch Act has served 
the nation well for more than 
half a century. Due to their 
positions of trust — as well 
as their vulnerability to 
partisan coercion — federal 
employees need the protec- 
tion it affords. Perhaps now 
more than ever. 



151 



PATRIOT LEDGER 



OUINCY, 

DAILY 



MA 
87,018 



TUESDAY 

MAR 9 1993 



198 
. .ebo 



fft/A 



PW 

■ .u 



Leave the Hatch Act alone 



Congress shouldn't open the gates to 
p.artisan politics in the federal civil 
service. The Senate should reject a 
House-passed bill that would allow 
:iliis/tty weakening the half-century-oid 

• Yes, times have changed since 1939 
when that law was passed, but the 
reasons for it remain valid. It's not a 
good idea to have federal workers 
■engaged in partisan political activity. 

The Hatch Act prevents federal 
'employees from running for political 
office, soliciting campaign funds or 
participating activriiy in political cam- 
paigns. These restrictions were en- 
acted to stop a blatant abuse: Federal 
workers pressured to contribute to 
political parties and help out in elec- 
tion campaigns. The "or-else" pan 
■was understood. If you didn't kick in. 
you might Icie your job to a more 
coooperative citizen or forget about a 
promotion. 

While protecting federal workers 
from partisan intimidation the Hatch 
v\ct also helped insure the public and 
administrations of both parties that 
they would be served impartially by 
the nonpartisan civil service. In turn. 
federal workers could expect to be 
treated like professionals by both Re- 
publican and Democratic administra- 
tions. 

'Loosening these restrictions, as leg- 



-.siation passed last week by the House 
would do, runs the risk of politicizing 
'.he federal service, to make merit less 
■.mportant than political onentation. 
The bill would permit civil service and 
postal employees to run for local office, 
though not for federal or state office. 
en their own time without takmg a 
leave of absence. More seriously, it 
would allow federal workers to manage 
political campaigns and raise money 
for candidates, though not during of- 
fice hours. 

The bill would not relax the present 
ban on federal employees using their 
positions or information they receive 
at work to advance political goals or 
candidates. 

Even so, we see no good reason for 
dismantling a good-government law 
that has proved its wonh for so many 
■•■ears. The argument that the Hatch 
.Act unfairly strips federal workers of 
political rights is not persuasive, given 
the more important public benehts of 
insulating the civil service from parti- 
san politics and the fact that the act 
has been upheld by the U.S. Supreme 
Court. 

The Hatch Act isn't broken. Con- 
fess shouldn't tamper with it. And 
President Clinton, who has said he 
would sign the legislation, should not 
be encouraging this ill-considered "re- 
form." 



152 



. .eck 



iTANOARD-TIMEU 

NEW EEOFORO, MA 
DAILY 43.600 

WEDNESDAY 

MAR 10 1993 



^DlT'">P'»i 

Hatch Act repeal will lead us 
to a rich vein of corruption 



• y 



For the past half century, (he 
federal bureaucracy has been 
immunized against infestation by 
political hacks by the Hatcfi Act, whicti 
sharply restricts the employees' 
political activities. 

In place of the corrupt environment 
the Hatch Act was enacted to repair, we 
now have a federal work force that, 
It can be argued, is quite professional. 
Robert Tobias of the National Treasury 
Employees Union proudly told a House 
panel. "We are not political cronies." 

This, evidently, is unacceptable to the 
House and to President Clinton, who are 
determined to eviscerate the Hatch Act 
and turn the clock back to the days when 
getting a federal job or a federal 
promotion often meant carrying out 
blatant political favors. 

.Although the provision of the Hatch 
Act were upheld by Supreme Court 
decisions in 1947 and 1972, a vague 
notion that the Hatch Act is 
unconstitutional, or at least 
un-Ame'ican, propels this ill-advised 
repeal movement. 

How convenient for the political 
power structure. Loosen the restrictions 
of the Hatch Act by allowing federal 
employees to raise political money, 
conduct campaigns, and even run for 
office, and — presto! Three million 
people are suddenly available for 
enlistment in congressional and 
presidential campaigns. (But they can't 
run for Congress. That would be going 
loo far.) 

And they will be enlisted, make no 
mistake. Fifty years of the Hatch Act 
hasn't changed human nature, and that 
claim of professionalism in the ranks is 
directly traceable to the fact that when 
the boss or the congressman came 
around looking for political favors, the 
employee could simply say, "Get lost." 
Repeal the Hatch Act, and these people 
will start getting fund-raising ticket 
books in the mail from their politically 
connected bosses, representatives and 
unions — in their off-hours, of course. 
Meanwhile, even though the law still 
will prohibit political activity while on 
duty, there will be political activity on 
duty. Ask anyone on Beacon Hill. They 
know. 

Beyond that, federal employees at all 
levels will be left to wonder whether 
this or that promotion or transfer was 
because of some favor he or she did or 
didn't do for someone. Perhaps this is 
why a 1992 survey found only SO percent 



of federal employees wanted relaxation 
of the Hatch Act, while 30 percent were 
opposed and 40 percent were neutral. 
Perhaps 70 percent of the federal 
workforce realizes that the Hatch Act is 
at least as good as it is bad — for them 
personally, and for the nation. 

Thi^ backsliding couldn't come at a 
worse time for the country. No sooner 
had we started thinking seriously about 
program cuts, military base closings, 
and all the other hard budget decisions, 
than Congress and President Clinton set 
out to unleash a political army with a 
vested interest in the status quo. What 
congressman is going to take a hacksaw 
to a federal bureaucracy that runs thick 
with potential contributors and 
campaign workers? What employee, or 
group of employees, would fail to take 
advantage of the new political leverage 
they will have against threats to their 
public sector jobs? At a state and local 
level, what happens when tax auditors. 
prosecutors and the like start taking 
jobs on public boards or political 
committees? How would we like it If 
U.S. attorney were chairman of the 
Democratic Party in Massachusetts, or 
the manager of a Senate campaign in his 
"spare time"? 

Those who contend that there won't be 
abuses — enormous abuses — are 
deluding themselves. After 50 years of 
the Hatch Act, we have not experienced 
the kind of institutional corruption that 
produced it. When we look at the size of 
the federal bureaucracy today, and the 
vast machinery of politics, the removal 
of restraints is positively frightening in 
Its possibilities. 

Presidents Reagan and Bush rightly 
vetoed previous attempts to dismantle 
the Hatch Act. What they did was good 
for the nation, and enabled that union 
representative to maintain a credible 
cUim of untarnished professionalism. 
Those claims will vanish overnight if the 
Hatch Act IS repealed, to be replaced by 
a whole new layer of suspicion and 
political manipulation. 

Doubt it? Do you want to risk giving it 
a. try? Democratic Reps. Barney Frank 
and Gerry Studds evidently do, since 
they were among the 331 eager 
Democratic votes for repeal (there were 
two defectors). Rep. Peter Blute, the 
freshman Republican, was one of the 86 
courageous "no" votes. Now all that 
stands in the way of Hackerama II is the 
Senate. Brace yourself. 



153 



10 



SUN HERALO 

PILOXI, MS 
OAILY 49,321 

TUESDAY 

nm 9 1993 



ST 



EDITORIALS 



,,^f»:» l-lf . I 



•Ji'-;.- 
•-^'itTviatai'rr'.." •• 



Changiiig Hatch 
Act would be 
damagiiig mistake 

Coni?ress is on the verge of destroyuig the 54- 
'.ear-ol d Hatch Act and President BUJ Clinton nas 
said he would sign the destrucuon order. 
This would be the worst possible thing 
these two branches of government could do for the almost 
3 million federal workers and for the 246 million or so 
citizens for whom they are supposed to work. 

The Hatch Act wisely prohibits federal employees 
from running for federal and partisan state offices and 
from full participation in political party activities. The 
net effect of removing the prohibition wUl be to transform 
the federal bureaucracy into a giant political machine, to 
the everlasting detriment of the nation. 

Such a development was exactly what Congress 
feared President Franklin D. Roosevelt was trying lo do ui 
1939 when it passed the act. Since then, it has prevent- 
ed subsequent politicians from taking charge of a nauonal 
force whose clout would be unbelievably strong. 

In theory, federal employees work for the people, 
delivering necessary government services fairly and 
equally. Without the Hatch Act to restrain them, em- 
ployees could themselves run for some political offices. 
They could organize fund-raisers. How would you like 
to tell an IRS agent who is auditing your tax return that 
you refuse to contribute to his boss' campaign fund? 

The law shields government employees from political 
manipulation, a shield Presidents George Bush and Gerald 
Ford preserved when Lhey vetoed Hatch Act reforms in 
1990 and in 1976. 

President Ford said, "The public expects the govern- 
ment service will be provided in a neutral, nonpartisan 
fashion. . . . This bill would be bad for the employee, 
bad for the government and bad for the public. " 

President Bush noted, "It has been manifestly suc- 
cessful over the years in shielding civil servants, and the 
programs they administer, from political exploitation 
and abuse. The Hatch Act has upheld the integrity of the I 



civil service by assuring that federal employees are 
hired and promoted based upon their qualificauons ant 
their political loyalties. " 

.Anyone who believes that those protections would 
remain without the Hatch .Act is hopelessly naive. 

T^J■ee times tne Hatch .Act has been chailengea to 
•Jie level of the L'.S. Supreme Coun and three times : 
coun has upheld it. Jusuce Byron White commented 
that the court's ruling confirmed "the judgment of hist 
a judgment made by this country over the last century 
that It is in the best interest of the country, indeed esi 
tial, that federal service should depend upon meriton- 
ous performance rather than political services, and th: 
the political influence of federal employees on others 
and on the electoral process should be limited. " 

Despite this history, the House of Representatives 
last week voted 333-86 to gut the Hatch Act. Mississi 
four Democratic congressmen voted to politicize gov- 
eiiunent cmploycfs. 

There s another disturbing reality about the presen 
rush to do away v/ith the Hatch Act. Federal employee 
unions are among the strongest supporters of trashing 
It. The president of one of those unions, Joe Vacca, N; 
tional Association of Letter Gamers, said that federal 
employees will never win the nght to strike until Hate: 
changed. Imagine the damage a strike of that union 
could cause. 

Further, the country is supposed to be entering a 
deficit- and debt-reduction phase. President Clinton ha 
pledged to reduce the federal work force by 100,000 
over a four-year period. Does anyone seriously believe 
he'll be able to eliminate any government workers and 
race the wraih and increased power of the unions that i 
resent those employees? 

Federal employees are free to vote, but their super- 
visors may not tell them how or suggest unpleasant cor 
sequences if they vote wrong. The employees may giv 
their money to candidates of their own choice and not t 
their bosses' favorites. They may, in their off hours, 
take pan in nonpartisan political activities. 
They are better off with the Hatch Act. 
We're ail better off with it 



154 



RED UING REPUBLICAN EPGLE 

-ED WING. IN 
DAILY 3,24i 

THURSDflV 
UAH / 1 no'^ 



.:9i 



BjjBS&JJJ 



EDITORIAL 



Don't mess with Hatch Act 



A |Hii|ii)Siil lo dromaticollv rostruciura ii'n 
I (.il(:!i A(? i IS moving through Congiuss at wnrp 
speed — with the apparent blessing o( President 
Clinton. That's easy to understand, given the cozi- 
ness between public ennployee unions and 
Democrats. 

The Hatch Act limits political activity of federal 
workers. The proposed legislation is dangerous at 
best. It should be resisted on all fronts. The mea- 
sure would greatly enlarge the power of public 
employee unions and further establish the 
bureaucracy as the real governing force in the 
nation 

Consider simply the voice of public employees 
in Minnesota. Wages and benefits paid tc public 
umployees account for 76 percent of the overall 
state operating budget, 54 percent of current 
expenditures lor aties over 2,500 and 50 percant 
of total current expenditures for Minnesota coun- 
ties. 

A fvlinnesota Chamber of Commerce study of 
Minnesota public employee compensation found: 

• Most public employees receive more gener- 
ous p.iy than iheir private sector counterparts lor 



I'.oih salary and benefits. The disparity recches 50 
iiurconi 111 some cases. 

• Public sector wjges and benefits are growing 
faster than Minnesolans' personal income. 

• Public sector compensation cind performance 
frequently are not linked. 

The findings echo those of other studies, 
iduding a 1992 report by thu -Mte auditor. Now 
multiply those numbers — and accompanying 
influence — on a national basis. 

Clinton's support of putting the Hatch Act goes 
contrary to his campaign pledge to reduce the 
federal work force and restore government 
accountability. Modify the Hatch Act, and it's 
extremely unlikely moat membors of Congress 
over would take a tough vote contrary to the 
wishes of public employee unions. Rip open the 
Hatch Act. and federal employees' right to strike 
won t be far behind. 

This nation's civil service system is far from 
perfect, but at least it prevents employees from 
oper.ly playing politics. Replace the Hatch Act. 
and the United States stands to rc<vert to the days 
u( political spoils. 



155 



THE K/WSASCiTv Star 






14 1993 

BUfffteLLTS 



Hatch Act in danger 



The 3 million federal-employees are a 
formidable political force. They would be 
much stronger under legislation now in 
Congress that would weaken the longstanding 
Hatch Act. That law restricts the political 
activities of the bureaucracv 

Political pressure, ;ncluding that ?n 
organized labor, led to a 333-86 House vote 
to scuttle the 1 939 federal statute. 

This pressure has built before. Two bills 
that would cnpple the Haiclu^ct were vetoed 
dunng the Bush administration. President 
Clinton has said he would sign the new 
measure if both houses approve it. 

The House bill would allow federal 
employees to seek some political offices. 
organize fund-raisers and endorse candidates, 
if they did it on their own time. 

Supponers cast this as a civil rights issue. It 



isn't: the constitutionality of the Hatch Act 
limitations is sound. 

Corrupt political activities in the bureau- 
cracy led to the Hatch Act. Some members oi 
Congress leared that President Franklin D. 
Roosevelt would mobilize federal woricers tor 
his re-election campaign. 

Manv federal workers favor the law. It 
keeps ' them from being coerced into 
contnbuting to campaigns or working in 
them. 

For everyone else, the Hatch Act helps keep 
politics out of governmental decisions. How 
would you like to have an IRS agent solicit a 
campaign contnbution from you? Or face a 
fund-raising request from a federal employee 
with authority in a matter you were trying to 
resolve with the government? 



ST. JOSEPH NEWS-PRESS -- Marcn 20, 1993 
St. Joseph, MO 



Don't emasculate Hatch Act 



In 1939, in an effocLbJirEsk the power 
of corrupt political machines and to 
protect federal employees from political 
retaliation for proper performance of 
their duties, the Congress of the United 
States adopted the Hatch Act. F or more 
than 50 years, the statute has protected 
federal workers from political abuse. 

While the federal employees were bar- 
red from running for political office or so- 
liciting funds for political parties and 
campaigns, they remained free to vote as 
they desired and were allowed to contrib- 
ute to pohtical campaigns, give money to 
candidates or volunteer in their off-hours 
for non-partisan political activities. 

But some politicians do not like the 



Hatch Act restnctions and view the mil- 
lions of federal employees as a rich lode to 
be mined for funds and see the employees 
as a tool for political activity and pressure. 
For example, income tax auditors and 
prosecutors would be confronted with 
subtle pressure to contribute money and 
time and favors to political interests. 

While the Hatch Act may need some 
Qne-timing and adjustment to modem 
times, it certainly should not be butch- 
ered, hamstnmg or emasculated for politi- 
cal purposes. Above all, federal employees 
should be protected from political pres- 
sures of all kinds from all political parties, 
as well as from political action com- 
mittees. 



156 



MISSISSIPPI ?RES: 

fASCABOULfi. .IS 
OAILV :2.BQ2 

THURSO*v 

FEB 25 1993 

Hatch Act has 
served us vyell 

Employment appiicauons that stress squooshy 
experience ' over concrete knowledge already 
have made the federal workforce less of a 
meritocracy. But the politicization of the 
bureaucracy will take a quantum leap if Congress 
much dilutes the 1939 Hatch Act . 

Passed after repons revealed how New Deal 
politicos were forcing federal workers to cam- 
oaien tor Democratic candidates, the act in- 
sulates government employees from partisan 
politics. Essentially, these employees cannot 
work in campaigns, run for office or solicit 
political donations from fellow workers. Our 
sense is that most Americans support such 
restrictions, which foster public trust in the 
impartiality of the nation's civd servants. 

What of the government workers themselves? 
Some claim that Hatch abridges their First 
Amendment right to free expression, though they 
can still vote and discuss politics. The Supreme 
Court, however, has upheld the act. Jusuce Byron 
White noting that 'the political influence of 
political employees on others and on the electoral 
process should be limited." Besides, most federal 
workers must enjoy protecuon from bosses 
shakedowns. 

Presidents Ford and Bush vetoed congressional 
attempts to water down Hatch, but President 
Clinton endorses the idea. Legislation sponsored 
by Sen. John Glenn. D-Ohio. and Rep. Bill Clay, 
D-Mo.. would send federal workers down the 
partisan path by allowing them dunng off-hours 
to carry posters at political rallies and to 
distribute campaign matenals. Bad business. 
Another revision — permitting work in voter- 
registration drives — seems unobjectionable. 

The core of Hatch should not be disturbed, 
however, because it reminds rank-and-file 
bureaucrats that their cardinal mission is to 
serve the public's abiding interests — not 
ephemeral politicians and their lieutenants. 
Already the Justice Department is investigating 
whether State Department staffers crossed this 
line by searching for passport dirt on presidential 
candidate Bill Clinton. 

Perhaps President Clinton will ponder that sort 
of abuse when the latest attempt to hobble Hatch 
lands on his desk. 



90 



MISSISSIPPI PRESS 

PASCAGOULA. HS 
DAIL. 22.802 

FRIDAY 

flAR ZS 1993 



ST 



Gutting Hatch Ac 
really a disservict 
to this country 

Over the years it was thought that whe: 
someone took a public (governmental! job. th' 
person then worked for the benefit of the public 
Government bureaucracy is so big now mat jus 
the opposite is the case. 

And now the push is on in Congress to aoolis 
the Hatch A ct so that governmental worKers ca. 
get more infopolitics. That's not good. 

The Hatch Act was passed in 1939 to protect th 
expanding federal work force from politica 
exploitation. The act prohibits federal worker 
from actively participating in partisan po' "cs 
But the Hatch Act doesn't cut federal empii.. ^e 
out of the electoral process. They can stil 
contribute money to candidates of their choice 
volunteer in off hours for non-partisan politica 
activities, and they can vote. 

Government workers in state and local elec 
tions are often intimidated into contributing t 
and working for their elected bosses. There is n 
reason to believe that same situation wouldn 
happen at the federal level if the Hatc.n Act i 
gutted. 

Common Cause, the citizens advocacy group 
thinks repeal is a terrible idea. 

The proposal had been blocked by both Presi 
dents Reagan and Bush. President Clinton sup 
ports the revision, as does organized labor. 

We support the Hatch Act, and we hope ou 
congressional delegation will lead the fight t 
continue the act. 



157 



.■mana ivorld-Hera; 
. i}maha, .','E1 

Marcn S, 1993 



Bu/^f^ELLTS 



Federal Work^fs-May Lose Shield 



Membersof the U.S. House of R e uitr 
^entaiives \oted to weaxen a good law 
'.vhen thev aavanced ieasiaiion mat 
would cut tne heart out ot" the Hatcn Act. 

The 54-year-oid law has neiped keen 
partisan politics out of the federal worK- 
place. It has protected government em- 
ployees from bemg forced to help in the 
election campaigns of their bosses. It has 
given those employees a wav to say no to 
pressure from their bosses or their union 
10 work for candidates who favored more 
spending on the bureaucracy. 

The Hatch Act. in shon. was passed for 
the purpose of preventmg the federal 
bureaucracy from bemg convened into a 
political machine. 

But now the House, on a 333-86 vote, 
has approved a measure that would water 
down the law bv ailowins government 
emplovees to engage in partisan pobtical 
activity and funa-raising so long as it 
occurs on the emplovees' own time. 

.Among the Midlanders who voted for 
the unlortunate change were Reps. Fred 
Grandy. R-Iowa. and Neal Smith. D.- 
Iowa, and Doug Bereuter. R.-Neb.. and 
Peter Hoagland. D.-Neb. We commend 
Reps. Jim Ross Lightfoot. R.-Iowa. and 
Bill Barrett. R.-Neb.. for opposms the 
change. 

.A 1989 sovemment sur\ev of federal 



emplovees mdicated that onlv 32 oercent 
of those surveved wantea tne act weak- 
ened. It isn't hard to unaerstana wnv tne 
number wasn t higner. Fne law rrotects 
the employees from pouticaj pressure as 
well as protecimg the puobc from corrupt 
government. 

Allowing politics to intrude into the 
government workplace undermines the 
pnnciple that government should be the 
servant of the people, not the other way 
around. Imagine what could happen if a 
government inspector or tax auditor dealt 
with a busmess or auzen by dav and came 
back coUectmg for a candidate that night. 
Even though the employee would be 
poliuckmg on his "own ume. ' as provided 
bv law. the elTect would be to poiiucize me 
office. 

The public's interest m maintaining a 
professional, nonpartisan cimI semce re- 
quires that federal emplovees not become 
partisan political activists, even on iheir 
own time. It's one of the thmgs that a 
person gives up m exchange lor federal 
employment. 

Both durmg and after the last fall's 
election. President Clinton said the voters 
wanted "change" in Washmgton. It's hard 
to beUeve that creatmg a workforce of 
power-wielding political organizers is the , 
type of change the voters had m mmd. 



67-400 0-94-6 



158 



OAIl ■ 



.•Kf<V 






Oeoj 



Don't unhatch_fed workers 

■ Diluting the l-latcii Act will politicize the civil service. 



In a little-publicized action 
last week, the U.S. House 
voted overwhelmingly to neuter 
the 54-year-old_Hktch Act. 
which limits the poHtfcai aaivi- 
ty of federal workers. 

Both Nevada representatives 
— Barbara Vucanovich. a Re- 
publican, and James Bilbray. a 
Democrat — sided with the ma- 
jority. The bill now awaits de- 
bate in the Senate. 

Those rushing to water down 
the Hatch Act — mostly Demo- 
crats — argue that it violates 
the free speech rights of federal 
employees. The more likely goal 
of their efforts, however, is to 
gear up an enormous political 
machine they hope would favor 
and sustain big government. 

The Supreme Court has three 
times upheld the Hatch Act. in- 
cluding a 1973 ruling that- stat- 
ed: "It is in the best interest of 
the countn,-. indeed essential, 
that the political influence of 
federal employees on others and 
on the political process should 
be limited." 

We agree. Apparently, so do 
many federal workers. A 1989 
survey by the Merit Systems 
Protection Board found that 68 
percent of federal workers op- 
posed weakening the Hatch Act. 
The reason: employees fear that 
without the act they'll be ha- 
rassed by their bosses or federal 
unions to take part in political 
activities or make campaign do- 
nations. 

The act itself stems from in- 
stances in the late 1930s when 
employees of the Works Pro- 
gress Administration — a New 
Deal jobs program — were as- 



signed to spend the election sea- 
son stumping for candidates 
who backed FDR. In Kentucky, 
some employees were threat- 
ened with the loss of their jobs if 
they didn't contnbute to the re- 
election effort of a U.S. senator. 

But the law doesn t just pro- 
tect federal workers from coer- 
cion, it also shields citizens from 
political pressure applied by 
members of the public sector. 
"Imagine an IRS agent going 
over your tax return." said Reed 
Larson, president of the Nation- 
al Right to Work Committee, 
which is scrambling to rescue 
the Hatch Act. "That evening, 
the same IRS agent appears at 
your door 'suggesting' you sign 
a (political) petition. . . ." 

If the new version of the 
Hatch Act become law. its pro- 
ponents claim provisions in the 
bill will still safeguard federal 
employees from political pres- 
sure, and prevent them from us- 
ing their jobs to affect an elec- 
tion. But. as syndicated 
columnists Jack Germond and 
Jules Witcover recently wrote. 
"Political pressure can take 
many subtle forms." 

As it stands, the Hatch Act 
does not prohibit federal work- 
ers from voting, joining political 
parties or contributing to cam- 
paigns. It simply provides a 
modicum of protection for work- 
ers and citizens alike to ensure 
that serving the public interest, 
not partisan politics, prevails. 

Nevada's two senators. Rich- 
ard Bryan and Harry Reid. 
should join efforts to oppose this 
power grab by the federal em- 
ployees unions. 



159 



"r'u.-sci;'- 

FEE 25 1992 



Labor 



unions 



m 



their 




■ ) ed:7cf*l 

Big labor is on the attark-at-tbe state and 
federal levels, calling in markert issued to 
unprincipled politicians during the past 
elections. Labor unions invested millions of 
dollars on politicians last fall; and. unlike 
President Clinton's proposed investments. 
big labors really do have a payoff. 

Unfortunately, the dividends benefit only 
the union itself. Workers, employers and the 
economy as a whole will suffer as the union 
bosses collect their harvest 

Here in Nevada, state senators are being 
asked to repeal the state's righf to work law 
by passing Senate Bill 202. Dubbed the "fair 
share" bill of 1993 by sponsors, the legisla- 
tion would force all workers to pay union 
dues. With more and more workers refusing 
to go along with the destructive practices of 
labor unions, laws such as SB202 are big la- 
bor's only hope of keeping its claws sunk 
into the private-sector work force. 

Citizens of Nevada must remind their legi- 
slators that right to work laws, which allow 
people to work without having to pay tribute 
to union bosses, are good for the state's eco- 
nomy. Compulsory unionism, on the other 
hand, would be devastating to the goal of 
economic diversification. A study by the 
Fantus Corporation, a leading business relo- 
cation consultant, found that nearly half of 
all businesses consider only right-to-work 
states in their expansion and relocation 
plans. 

If our state legislature were to pass, and 
our governor were to sign, SB202, Nevada 
would be shutting the door on 50 percent of 
the businesses seeking a new location. This 
bill is good only for the union bosses and the 
politicians who feed off them. 

Back in Washington. D.C.,^^ion bosses 
are poised to repeal the H atch Act Passed 
in 1939, this act prohibits federal employees 
from intimidating or bribing voters or ac- 
tively campaigning for a cause or a 
candidate. 

The National Right to Work Committee 



cashing 
chips 



notes Nevada Senators Harry Reid and Ri- 
chard Bryan already have betrayed their 
constituents once, by voting to repeal this 
act in 1990. and will do so again unless told 
not to by the people who voted them into 
office. 

Without the Hatch Act the Right to WorK 
Committee explains, the following could 
happen: An OSHA inspector, prior to touring 
a factory, recommends the owner hang a 
campaign poster for a union-backed candi- 
date in the office. Or, the committee warns, 
an IRS agent working on a person s tax re- 
turn could ask for a contnbution to a politi- 
cian's campaign. 

"Sounds illegal. And for the time being, it 
still is," the committee writes. "But if Sena- 
tors Bryan and Reid gut the ^tch Act no- 
thing will stop the union czars from con- 
scripting the vast federal bureaucracy into 
their lobbying and electioneering schemes. ' 
With big labor s very own president on dutv*. 
It will be up to the people to put the screws 
to their representatives — there is no hope 
for a veto this time around. 

The Hatch Act repeal represents one 
more contradiction in our new president. On 
the one hand, he must pay back the unions 
for all their support On the other, he must 
do a credible job of reining in the govern- 
ment if he were to aspire toward re-election. 
One of his proposals to accomplish that is to 
sack 100.000 federal employees. But as the 
WaU. Street Jourrud noted last week, repeal- 
ing the Hatch Act — and thereby increasing 
the power of the public-sector unions — will 
make it that much more difficult to reform 
the federal bureaucracy. 

But to a president who believes more fed- 
eral spending is the answer to fixing the de- 
ficit perhaps there is no contradiction in 
trying to "reinvent government" by allowing 
"the civil service to become a giant lobby for 
its own self interest" as the Journal phrased 
it-DS 



I 



160 



I.AS CROCES SUH-HEUS 

LAS TRIICES. NH 
OAILY 19,200 

SUNOAV 

HflR 7 1993 



Sxi. 



FO 



Don't destroy 
the Hatch Act 

The patch Act has been in effect for 54 
years to shield federal workers from poiiu- 
cal coercion and to protect private aiizens 
against harassment by federal workers 
promoting political gain. 

The Hatch Act should be kept in force, 
but to do so will be up to the U.S. Senate. 
New Mexicans should be making their 
views on the subject knowTi to Sen. Pete 
Domenici, R-N.M., and to Sen. Jeff Binga- 
man, D-N.M. When the matter came up in 
1 990, Bingaman voted in favor of destroy- 
ing the Hatcji Act while Domenici, accord- 
ing to the National Right to Work Commit- 
tee, "voted to protect the Hatch Act after 
Right to Work members convinced him to 
repudiate his prior support for Hatch Act 
destruction." 

Big Labor's new clout under the Demo- 
cratic-led Administration and Congress 
showed itself on Wednesday when the U.S. 
House of Representatives voted 333 to 86 
to gut the Hatch Act, with Reps. Joe 
Skeen, R-N.M., and Bill Richardson, 
D-N.M., voting with the majority. Rep. 
Steve SchiO; R-N.M.. voted to keep the 
Hatch Act protections. 

New Mexico has a tie to the history of 
the Hatch Act, The legislation was named 
after Democratic Sen. Carl Hatch of New 
Mexico. Notes The. Wall Street Journal in a 
Feb. 19 editorial: "It was passed in 1939 to 



tighten longstanding protections against a 
politicized federal work force. A Pulitzer 
Prize-winning series had documented how 
New Deal workers in Kentucky and other 
states had been coerced into supporting 
political incumbents." 

The Supreme Court has fdways upheld 
the Hatch Act, and Presidents Ford and 
Bush vetoed attempts to repeal the act in 
1976 and in 1990. Reed Larson, -National- 
Right to Work president, states: "Destroy- 
ing the federal Hatch Act means conscript- 
ing 2.9 million federal workers into Big 
Labor's political machine. That's why most 
federal workers oppose Hatch Act repeal, 
and why union officials are so hungry to 
destroy this law." 

As The Wafshmgton Times points out, 
"Federal employees are not banned from 
politics. They can vote, make contributions 
to campaigns and belong to political par- 
ties. Anything more than than is a prob- 
lem." 

Common Cause says repeal would "in- 
crease the potential for widespread abuse 
and open the way for implicit coercion 
against which there can be no real protec- 
tion." 

The Hatch Act should be kept, and 
Bingaman and Domenici should help do so 
with their votes. 



161 



JATERTOUN uAlLV "liiEb" 

■jATEKTOUN. .. - 
tATUROAV 

fIftR 6 1393 

3l/fV ^lL£'S 



"20 



;a 



Modifying the Hatch Act 

Action Taken in the Congress 



The House of Representatives 
has taken action to water 
down the restnctions of the Hatch 



Act which concerns the activities 
'it federal employees. 

The move, aiso t'avored bv the 
.Senate ana President Bill Clin- 
ton, would overhaul the Hatch Act 
to allow federal employees to en- 
gage in partisan politics outside 
the olfice in their own time. 

Proponents of the act who do 
aot want change fear that federal 
government workers will become 
over-political to the detriment of 
carrying out their own jobs in a 
non-partisan way. 

The act, which has been on the 
books since 1939. currently pre- 
vents federal employees from run- 
ning for political office, soliciting 
campaign funds or playing a lead- 
ing role in a political campaign. 

The measure would permit fed- 
eral employees to run for local of- 
fice, but not federal or state posi- 
tions, on their own time without 
taking a leave of absence. Money 
also could be raised for candidates 
during ofFhours. 

Supporters of change, who in- 
clude both Democrats and moder- 
ate Republicans, say that 3.2 mil- 
lion federal workers have been de- 
nied their constitutional rights. 
Opponents say that the civil ser- 
vice system must preserve its 
non-partisan image. 

Some observers question the 
movement for change. President 
Clinton has said he would like to 
trim the federal work force by at- 
trition over four years. However, 
the proposed change would be ex- 
pected to increase the power of 



public employee unions who could 
oppose such streamlining and 
make it less likely through politi- 
cal persuasion for Congress to re- 
form the bureaucracy. 

Hatch has been challeneea 
:hree times on constitutional 
grounds and has been upheld in 
each case. In 1973 Justice Byron 
VVhite. the only Democratic ap- 
pointee now on the court, wrote in 
the opinion, "it is m the best inter- 
est of the country, indeed essen- 
tial, that the political influence of 
federal employees on others and 
on the political process be limit- 
ed." 

Public employee unions have 
repeatedly tried to water down 
the Hatch Act. In fact, the presi- 
dent of the National Association of 
Letter Carriers has said that fed- 
eral employees never will have 
the right to strike until the Hatcn 
.Act is changed. 

The Hatch Act was designed to 
protect federal workers from po- 
litical coercion and protect the 
public from a politicized bureau- 
cracy by prohibiting certain parti- 
san political activities. While the 
rights of the individual should be 
protected, so must the integnty of 
the civil service. Civil servants 
should be hired and promoted 
based on their qualifications and 
not their political loyalties. 

The situation is a ticklish one. 
Lifting the lid on the Hatch Act, 
even for seemingly good reasons, 
could be treacherous and care 
must be taken as efforts go for- 
ward to cut waste and make the 
federal bureaucracy more effi- 
cient. 



162 



THE BUFFALO NEWS 






UAR 



qq^. 



ffrrr;'^'^^^^^ 



Don^t wreck the Hatch Act 

This federal law protects civil servants^ and public 



WITH A DEMOCRAT m the White 
House, the Democrats who control 
Congress are pushing with unbecom- 
ing zeai for approval of changes that wouid 
gut the Hatch Act. T heir success would be 
the public's loss. For half a century, this 
useful law has protected federal employees 
from partisan political coeraon and helped 
assure the public of an impartial administra- 
tion of government. 

Those so eager to destroy the Hatch Act 
might recall the advice of John Kennedy: 
Learn why fences are put up before teanng 
them down. 

This statute was cnaaed in 1939. foilow- 
iflg revelations of New Deal workers being 
coerced into supporting political incumbents, 
lis author. Sen. Carl Hatch of New Mexico, 
was a Democrat. 

These legal safeguards for civil servants 
and the public are as imponant today as 
they were then. 

Simply put. the Hatch Act bars federal 
civil servants from involving themselves in 
partisan political activities. It bans them 
from soliciting campaign funds, managmg a 
panisan political campaign or running for 
office in a partisan election. 

Despite support for the revisions by lead- 
ers of the public employee unions, many 
rank-and-file civil servants don t want the 
law crippled. Under it. they retain basic po- 
litical rights while being insulated from par- 
tisan pressures from their superiors in gov- 
ernment or influential political figures. 

Some argue that the Hatch Act denies 
covered federal workers their constitutional 
rights. But the Supreme Coun has rebuffed 



that spunous claim. Writing tor a 1973 ma- 
jority, Justice Byron White said it 'is in the 
best interest of the country, mdeed essential, 
that federal service should depend upon 
memonous performance rather man Dodti- 
cai service, and that the political iniluence 
of federal employees on others and on the 
electoral process should be limited." 

The ill-conceived House proposal would 
trample such distinctions. It wouid allow civ- 
il servants to run as candidates in partisan 
eleaions. serve as officers of political par- 
ties, raise money for and manage panisan 
campaigns and administer political action 
committees. The lone restriaion: Do it only 
on your own time. 

It is difficult to take that feeble disiuic- 
tion seriously. One wonders whether a fed- 
eral housing admmistrator who serves as a 
Democratic or Republican party chairman 
by night could fairlv decide between compet- 
ing bids for housmg grants by dav. What 
about the corruptmg appearance of favorit- 
ism? Would the refusal of a civil servant to 
assist m a congressman's campaign bv night 
inhibit his or her chances for a deserved 
promotion at work by day? 

Common Cause, the citizen lobbv. does 
not consider the statute perfect, but strongly 
objects to the weakenmg revisions. President 
Fred Wertheimer recently urged House 
members to defeat the changes. 

Some vague f&atures of the law might I 
well be clarified. But Congress can do that i 
without kicking down a tested legal fence ; 
that for decades has protected the public j 
and federal civil servants alike. I 



163 



:pESS-bEPUBLICAN 

rLATTSBURGH. '■^ 

OAiLv i SUNDA-, ;:.£6: 

TRIOAV 

HOU 27 1292 



CR 



ed 



VIEWPOINT 



Retaining the Hatch Act 



It's a fine ideal — "the impartial, 
evenhanded conduct of government 
business" — that President Bush 
claimed to uphold when he vetoed a 
revision of the Pi^tdL^t in 1990. It 
now emerges that some of his own 
appointees have trampled at least the 
spirit of the half-century-old ban on 
partisan activity by federal workers. 

The passport-file mini-scandal that 
has dirtied Bush's last months in of- 
fice offers a depressing glimpse of 
Washington politics. Last September 
Republican operatives, desperate at 
their candidate's poor showing in the 
polls, seized on the rumor that Bill 
Clinton once had tried to renounce 
his American citizenship to avoid the 
draft. 

This sounded wildly improbable to 
us; a young man bent on rising in 
politics doesn't throw away the first 
requirement for a political career. 
But even the remote chance that the 
rumor was true apparently turned 
some Republican heads. 

It now emerges that Bush ap- 
pointees at the assistant-secretary 
level in the State Department, partly 
in response to an inquiry from the 
news media, orchestrated an ex- 
traordinary search of passport re- 
cords in the hope of uncovering a 
document fatal to Clinton's cam- 
paign. Telephone calls suggest at 



least coordination with the White 
House. The participants should have 
considered the damage to their side if 
their shenanigans became known, as 
they easily could. 

They did. and the State Depart- 
ment's inspector general has in- 
vestigated this abuse of confidential 
files and public employees to influ- 
ence the outcome of an election. He 
has recommended that several of- 
ficials be disciplined; one has resign- 
ed. And a new chapter is written in 
the annals of Republican — or rather, 
political — dirty tricks. 

For the GOP has no lock on par- 
tisan zeal. The leaking to the press of 
Anita Hill's accusation against 
Supreme Court nominee Clarence 
Thomas last fall is only the most 
famous recent example of Democrats' 
deliberate exploitation of confidential 
documents for partisan ends. Scru- 
ples don't reliably discipline either 
party. 

That's why the Hatch Act should 
be retained full strength. 'While it 
cannot prevent all abuses, the ban on 
partisan activism by government 
employees does forestall the open 
politicization of agencies. It sustains 
a certain attitude of public service 
and nurtures the idea that lapses are 
a cause for shame. 



164 



SOI 



NIAGARA GAZETTE 

NIAGARA FALLS. NY 
DAILY ;S,850 

FRIDAY 

HftR 5 1993 



on 



Unwise 
Congress 
hacks up 
Hatch Act 



DANGER AHEAD: Ija revised Hatch 
Act slides through the U.S. Senate, federal 
employee unions will become partisan 
armies and abuse will run rampant. 

While you were busy working Wednesday, the 
House of Representatives was busy doing dirty 
work. In a late-aftemoon vote. Congress ^ 
unwisely passed a revised version of theilalcL 
AcKH.R. 20) by 333 to 86. One of the "Yes" 
votes came from Congressman John J. LaFalce. 
D-Town of Tonawanda. A companion bill has 
been introduced in the Senate and is likely to slide 
through there, too. 

The Hatch Act became law m 1939 after 
newspaper articles exposed the depth of political 
coercion visited upon federal employees. Since 
then, this far-seeing law has meant that federal 
employees are "Hatched, ' ' slang meanmg they 
are forbidden to engage in partisan activities. 

The 3.2 million postal workers and federal civil 
service employees are barred from soliciting 
political funds from fellow workers, using their 
offices for partisan activity, running for office or 
taking an active part in a campaign. 

Their fundamental political rights — to vote, 
make contributions and engage in nonpartisan 
causes — are untouched. A recent poll showed 
that most federal employees like it that way. 



The House bill, which has the unionunate 
backing of President Clinton, will gut the Hatch 
Act and open the floodgates to political abuse. 
\Vith one sweep of a pen, federal workers would 
be able to run for office, manage campaigns and 
raise money for political candidates. 

The bill, called the Federal Employees Poliucai 
.Acuvities Act. would still bar campaigning on 
political propeny and usuig federal authority to 
influence campaign results. But these weak 
safeguards would hardly affect the immense 
coercive pressures of panisanship within a 
politicized civil service system. 

If the Hatch Act is gutted, the influence and 
power of federal employee unions will increase 
exponentially. Not oniy will the corridors oi 
power be flooded by demands from lederaiiy-paia 
power brokers, but the incentive to streamline 
government by reformmg the federal bureaucnc\- 
would disappear overnight. The Post Office 
would earn the right to strike. Eventually, federal 
employees who don't toe a political line wiil be 
denied promotions, abused or fured. 

It's an unsavory picture, mirrored by the way 
the House bill slithered to a vote on a trail of slimy 
procedures. H.R. 20 was approved early in the 
session, without a public hearing, by the Post 
Office and Civil Service Committee. On Feb. 23 
and 24. a sly coalition of representees nearly got 
the bill through without debate or amendment. 
Theu- attempt to suspend the rules was narrowiv 
avened. 

The Hatch Act has been challenged three times 
in the Supreme Coun. All three challenges were 
shot down by justices feanng the political 
influence of federal employees. 

Two presidents, Gerald Ford and George 
Bush, sensibly vetoed similar Hatch-guttmg bills 
in 1975 and 1990. 

Clinton should do the same this time, but he 
won't. The short-term political bonus of a 
politicized federal bureaucracy is too tempting. 

The only hope to save the Hatch Act lies in the 
U.S. Senate. Alphonse D'Amato is likely to 
oppose the revision, but Daniel Patnck .Moynihan 
unfonunately will side with the president. 

Let him know you think unhinging Hatch is a 
bad idea. 



t 



165 



The Cincinnati Post 

ONCMNMIOH 



Q < 



Hobbling the Hatch Act 



^•At->-\ .y"'^~*'C-'.Y;>-»^ 



The politicization of the fed- 
eral bureaucracy will take 
a quantum leap if Con- 
gress much dilutes the '.939 
Hatch Act. 



Passen arter Scr'.pps H'^'^'ara 
reporter T'li'^nas ^'^'k^'^ ' e- 
veaied how New Deal poiif.ccjs 
were forcing federal workers to 
campaign for Democratic candi- 
dates, the act insulates govern- 
ment employees from partisan 
politics. Essentially, these em- 
ployees cannot -.s-ork m '.'am- 
paiens, run for office or soiicit 
political donations from fellow 
workers. Our sense is that most 
Americans support such restric- 
tions, which foster public trust 
in the impartiality of the na- 
tion's civil servants. 

Presidents Ford and Bush ve- 
toed congressional attempts :u 
water down Hatch, but Presi- 
dent Clinton endorses the idea. 



Legislation sponsored by Sen. 
John Glenn, D-Ohio, and Rep. 
Bill Clay, D-Mo., would send fed- 
eral workers down the partisan 
path by allowing rhem during 
off-hours to carry posters at po- 
'.itical rallies and to distribute 
._anipaien materials. 

Hatch's central purpose 
shouldn't be disturbed because 
It reminds rank-and-file bureau- 
crats that their cardinal mission 
is to serve the public's abiding 
mterests — not ephemeral poli- 
ticians. The Justice Department 
is investigating whether State 
Department staffers crossed this 
line by searching for passport 
dirt on presidential candidate 
Bill Clinton. Perhaps Clinton 
will ponder that sort of abuse 
when the latest attempt to hob- 
ble the Hatch Act lands on his 
desk. 



166 



FAYETTEUILLE 
OBSERUER-TIHES 

FAVrTTCVILLE. NC 
DAILY 71,:ii 

FRIOAV 

KAR 12 1993 



*^eb. 



'LLB'S 



Too Much Liberty 



"^Ui. 



Move To Ease Hatch Act Sows Seeds Of Coercion 



T he Hatch Act has been in torce 
for so long — o4 years — that few 
people besides tederal employees give u 
much thought. Enacted to assure that 
Franklin D. Roosevelt wouldn't use fed- 
eral workers to help him get re-elected, 
it circumscribes some basic freedoms 
of political activity the rest of us enjoy. 

It has been a mixed blessing. On 
paper, at least, it keeps federal office- 
holders from strong-arming their em- 
ployees into doing political work for 
them or coughing up donations to the 
cause. But it also keeps many good, 
civic-minded, talented people from en- 
gaging in ordinary civic activities — 
running for their local school boards, 
for instance. 

The U.S. House of Representatives 
moved to change all that last week, 
voting to allow federal workers to run 
for lower-level offices, publicly endorse 



candidates and organize fund-raisers. 
lUnder these loosened terms, they would 
have to do these things on their own 
time, which is only fitting.) 

The Observer-Times is not con- 
vinced this is an unalloyed blessing. 

The part about allowing employees 
to run for local office seems fine and 
high-minded. The other effects, howev- 
er, are troubling. Any power that can be 
abused, eventually will be. If the Senate 
also passes this measure, we fear that 
down the road we'll be reading about 
members of Congress and other clout- 
heavy federal types muscling funds and 
"volunteer" assistance out of their hap- 
less and helpless employees. 

The Senate needs to cure this ex- 
cess and send the measure back to the 
House. To do so, it will have to find the 
courage to go against its own self- 
interest. Dare we hope? 



167 



OBoESytR-PEPOR 



ICK 



UASHlNCTCtI fi 
DAILY ?. iUNL'AV .-•,uu.-. 

"RlCmv 

fIftR 5 1993 



b59 



£gE§£Ul^ 



The Hatch Act serves 



good purpos 







The CS. House of Representa- 
tives this week voted to revise the 
Hatc h Act, w hich bans federal 
workers from being involved in 
partisan politics. Similar action is 
expected soon in the Senate. 

Congress has voted twice before 
to revise the Hatch Act. but the 
legislation was vetoed, first by 
President Ford and then in 1990 by 
President Bush. With a sympath- 
etic president now in the White 
House, supponers of the change see 
a good chance of success. 

But It \s still a bad idea. The 
Hatch Act serves a number of good 
purposes, not the least of which is 
protecting federal employees from 
being conscripted as political work- 
ers in order to keep their jobs. 

It also protects the public from 
tne possibility that an IRS agent or 
an administrator of a federal aid 



program might put the arm on ciu- 
zens for campaign contributions. 

There seems to be less than over- 
whelming support among federal 
workers for weakening the Hatch 
Act. According to the Vfall Street 
Journal, a 1989 survey of federal 
employees by the Merit Systems 
Protection Board found that only 32 
percent wanted the act changed. 

The impetus for change comes 
not from the rank-and file, but from 
public employee unions, which 
have political agendas of their own. 
If the Hatcn Act is gutted, they can 
turn their memberships into a 
ready-made army of political work- 
ers. 

President Clinton was a benefici- 
ary of considerable suppon from 
these unions. He will be expected to 
repay that debt if the Senate ap- 
proves the bill. 



168 



Mi 

Jlnqttirer 



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30NMJ) UMRMAN. OMMV MlMfM ^M* C«'*r 

ACK MOOM. A«M0ai« UUtr 



10 



Mondvy. Mardi 1. 1993 



EDITORMLS 



Let the Hatch Act be 

•It*s as good an answer as any to the puzzle 
of government employees' politicking 



If tht Demoents la Congress are 
going to pass b«d Wis, xhty shoMid at 
least follow {ood procedure. T!i8t 
muDS allowing detMtc and amend* 
meats. Yet when the House took up a 
major bill last week, members aot 
only coQidsl ameud It rhey htd '.''.r* 
ttuOly no time to debate IL la stxort, 
tbe representatives of tile people 
were under a gag rule. It looked as if 
tHe Democrats don't like dernocracy. 

Tht bill In questloa would have 
gutted a SVyear-old law — the Hatcb 
Act — that bars federal workers from 
running for political olflce and from 
engaging in other partisan activities. 
It waa enacted to make tbe bureaU' 
cracy less backrtddled and to Insn- 
lata federal workers from partisan 
pressures. CenenUy speAklng, it has 
worked. 

Fortunately, tbe Mil didn't quite 
gamer tbe two-thirds majonty 
needed to pass It under tbls arrange* 
menu Tbus the bill win get the ex- 
tensive debate that It deserves, and 
lawmakers will now have an opportu* 
nlty to Improve it by useodment. 

Since President Clinton and ma* 
Jorltles In both bouses of Congress 
clearly want to soften the current 
law, tbe question Isn't whether to do 
it, but bow far to go. Tha legislation 
that was nearly rammed tbrough tbe 
House last week would bave gone 
way too far. In allowing federal em- 
ployees to work off hours In pollitcal 
campaigns, for example, the bill 
doesn't even exclude people who 
work for tbe Federal Election Com- 
mission (FEC) — tbe watchdog 
agency for congressional and preai* 



dentlai campaigns. As pointed out by 
someone wbcsa district includes lots 
of federal employees, Rep. Ftsuk 
Wolf (R.. Vs.), that would let an FEC 
employee do moonlighting work for 
a congressional candidate, then audit 
the financial report of tbe candl* 
date's opponent by day. 

Mr. Wolf also argues that the ban 
on campaign work should be main- 
tained as well for employees of the 
Justice Department, tbe CIA and 
other law-enforcement and Intelli- 
gence agencies. He reasons that, in 
such areas, it's especially important 
that decision-making be free of 
even the possibility of being influ- 
enced by partisan consideration. 
We agree. 

But even If such exceptions were 
made, we fall to see the compelling 
argument for freeing the rest of 
America's roughly 3 million federal 
workers and postal employees to leap 
Into politics — letting them partici- 
pate m campaigns and, without giv- 
ing up their relatively secure posi- 
tions, even run for office themselves. 
If such involvements were allowed, 
tbe public's respect for federal work- 
ers, such as It Is, would surely de- 
cline. At the same time, more and 
more employees would feet improper 
pressure to be politically active in 
their jpare time. 

These are basic reasons why the 
Hatcb Act is being defended by the 
ACLU, Common Cause — and many 
federal employees themselvn. If It's 
not broke, why rush to fix It? For 
that matter, why fix It at ail? 



169 



■VLW CASTLi. -- 
-.AIL: .:.i-- 

FEB 25 12S3 

Keep Hatch Act 
in present form 

{Resident Clinton has acknowledged on several occa- 
sions that the American people's faith in the federal 
government has seriously eroded. Despite that; 'he 
seems bent on speeding up that erosion. 

How? By supporting changes in the Hatch Act, the law 
which prevents federal employees from engaging in po- 
litical activity. The president has said be will sign legis- 
lation designed to ease the current restrictions. 

Advocates of change say that 3 million federal work- 
ers are denied basic First Amendment rights because 
they cannot volunteer for political campaigns, run for 
otl^e^r make campaign contributions. Changmg the 
Hatch Act, they say, would be a blow for freedom. 

DdiiT believe it. TTie impetus for amending the Hatch 
Act has nothing to do with concern for the Constitution. 
But it has a great deal to do with political influence. And 
while there are no doubt federal employees who feel re- 
stricted by the limits imposed by the Hatch Act, there 
are probably many more who are usually grateful for 
rules which actually serve as a form of protection. 

Because of the Hatch Act, it's a crime to attempt to 
coerce a federal employee into making a political con- 
tribution or assisting parties or candidates in some oth- 
er way. Alter the act and rest assured government 
workers will face pressures they don't encounter now. 

How could amending the Hatch Act hurt? Here's an 
example: One of the: proposed changes would allow fed- 
eral employees to run for public office. It doesn't re- 
quire a great deal of imagination to see where such an 
individual could be compromised by having -his obliga-' 
tions as a federal employee conflict with his interests as 
an elected state cr local official. 

It's important to consider the stakes in altering the 
Hatch Act What's more Important at this point in the 
Republic's history, allowing federal employees to dab- 
ble in politics or striving to protect the integrity of and 
public confidence in the federal government? 

That's why Qinton's support for changes in the act is 
so ironic and disturbing this early in his presidency. 
Even if he were a strong advocate of amending the act, 
is it really a top priority? Shouldn't he tell fellow Demo- 
crats in Congress to place thi&issue on the back burner? 
Instead. House Democrats tried this week to ram the 
amendments through over Republican demands for ad- 
ditional debate. It appears Washington has solved its 
gridlock problems on a number of issues, but integrity 
is still in short supply. 



170 



ITT:EURGH. -^ 
■ ; rL.'KLiAV 

linn u A.w«^ 



Hatching a plot 

Democrats target a law that promotes good government 

For more than half a centary, a law rejected that argument There is nothing 

called the Hatch Act has promoted unconstitutional about imposmg restnc- 

good goverament by restricting Uons on federal employees that dont apply 

political activities by federal wort- to the general population, 
en. But this week the US. House of Granted, the bill passed by the House is 

Representatives, sensing support from i^^ sweeping than past proposals, a sign 

President Clinton, voted 333-86 to relax the ^^ j^ proponents recognize public con- 

iaw. The bill isn't nearly as bad as it might ^^^^^^ ^^^yt ^ politicized federal woric force, 
have been, but it stiU goes too far. por example, federal wotters would stiU 

At present federal workers are barred ^ ^y^^ted from running for federal or state 

from engaging in any partisan poUtical ^^^^ j^^ ^^ coui^ seek local offices. 

activity on the reasonable theory that public ^^ ^ ^ ^^^ member of Congress put 

servants shouldn't be pursumg partisan .^^ ^ ^^ :.,q^ government is, after the 

political causes, even on their own time. One g^gctions. fairly non-partisan.' Yet that 

danger is that pubUc employees might (,j,3ra(.tenzation is not universaily true and. 

pressure their subordinates to jom m theu- ^ ^^^ gyg„ lo<^ elecUon campaigns 

political activities. Another is that consum- ^^^^^ ^^ ^^ ^^j, several months. 
en of government sennces would find democracy, partisan poUtics plays a 

themsehjs on the recewmg end of an J"^^^^,^^^ the changes 

°":J^, ^^J!rtf "• r.. to S by BilTSlinton Lre his election 

TUc bill passed by the House purports to ^^^ gut for half a century federal 

9^»9>^^^^^^^ZS^^'^ uTS^^^«i that no^pSnaking 

wooM prohibit govenmient workers from Ze^^^^ should be insulated- 

)brcnigoth«^empioye« to engage mpobU- f^'^'g'^l pressure and prevented from 

caiactivj^- B«^^,.f **^,^.°* the Pennsyl- ^^^J*°^ p^^ theLelves on the 

vania political fradition of "madng" know, exenmg =»""' ^' . , 

definingand proving coetraon iniiTch situa- «*>»«« with whom they deal 
tions can be difOcult If Congress is unwillmg to leave weU 

Critics of th e Hatch Act including unions enough alonejthe future of the Hatch Act 

representing f ederal emp loyees, complain will Ue with President CUnton. In this case, 

StT teS deprives fKworic^ of we hope he wUl have the courage not to 

frwMR)eechriSenK»yed by other Ameri- change a reasonable law that has set>^ the 

cans. ITie US. Supreme Court rightly has country weU. 



171 



HILTON, f-6 
DAILY i,.100 

MAR 2 1993 



Hatch-bashers, 
hard at worlK^ 



In 1939, a bill thai made u lilegal 
for federal government employees to 
parucipaic in many oven poiiucal 
aciiviues was passed. 

The HAfch Act, as u came to be 
known, namea lor Sen. Carl Hatcn of 
New Mexico, was a good bill then and 
it's a good bill now. li djdn't take 
away the nghi lo vote, but it did limu 
the involvement of federal govern- 
ment workers in campaigns, it also 
protected i)iem from unscrupulous 

DOSSCS. 

Unfortunately, many of our federal 
lawmakers are trying to gain its repe- 
al, or at least weaken it to me pomt 
that wc will have a politicized bureau- 
cracy, wnich is the reason l^.s Hatc.n 
Act was passed in tnc first r:acs 

Since Uic beginning cf ihc new 
icgisiauvc session in Washington, our 
lawmakers have been trying to get a 
bill passed that would allow federal 
government employees to have full 
parucipauon m poliucs. 

On the surface, that sounds like a 
good idea, but m pracuce it has a terri- 
ble odor. 

One reason it smells bad is that 
pnorto 1939. government employees 
were subjected to harassment and 
coercion by iheir supenors. who 
wanted ihem to work for certain polit- 
ical campaigns. 

Another reason for the bad odor is 
that repealing the act or weakening u 
would open the door for federal 
unions to become more poimcally 
powerful. Indeed, the National Asso- 
ciauon of Letter Gamers is a propo- 
nent of the latest assault on the Hatch 
Act. 

Many groups, including Common 
Cause, recognize that the Hatch Act is 
the only way to avoid having federal 
unions become full-fledged political 
machines. 

There is no evidence that the 
majonty of federal workers want the 
act repealed or changed. A poll by the 
Merit Systems Protection Board 
found that only 32 percent of those 
workers wanted the act weakened. 

One reason for their suppon of the 
act is that poUucal arm-rwisung is 
illegal as long as Hatch is in force, full 
strength. 



iM 



The machinauons of the House tc 
gut the Hatch Act include the approv- 
al on January 27 of H.R. 20. intro- 
duced by Rep. Bill Clay of Missoun. 
by the Post Office and Civil Service 
Commitific. which Clay chairs, with- 
out a hearing. 

On February 23 and 24. the House 
tned. but failed to approve the bUi 
without debate or amendment by sus- 
pending the rules. The two-ihu-ds vote 
needed to suspend the rules couldn't 
be mustered, but that didn't stop the 
assault on the act. It conanued this 
week. 

In 1990. President Bush vetoed 
ana-Hatch Act legislauon , but the 
HouseoverrodeiiDvavQic of 327-93. 
Ren. George Gekas. who rcpnesentea 
L*ie Milton area at that ume. was one 
cf only five members of the Pennsyl- 
vania delegauon who voted against 
the ovemde. 

Fortunately, the Senate narrowly 
sustained the veto when 65 of the 100 
members, two short of the required 
two-thirds majonty, voted for it. 
Arlen Specter and the late John Hemz 
voted to ovemde the veto. 

Another Hatch Act revision. S. 
1 85. has been introduced in the Senate 
by Ohio Sen. John Glenn, who chairs 
the Governmental Affairs Commit- 
tee, which will consider the bill. 

Hearings on the Senate bill were 
scheduled for March 2. but were 
delayed until the confirmation of a 
Director of the Office of Personnel 
Management and Aaomey General. 

The House obviously didn't think 
the opinions of these two key govern- 
ment officials was important. 

More than 100 years ago. the 
United States replaced the spoils sys- 
tem with civil service. The new sys- 
tem has problems, to be sure, but they 
will only be magnified if civil service 
is permitted to become a lobby for its 
own purposes. 

If President Clinton signs a bill to 
repeal or weaken the Hatch Act. he 
will be creating a throwback to the 
spoils system. 

The Hatch Act is one of the few 
"good government" laws that amount 
to a hill of beans. Let's keep it intact: 



172 



'"FJjmn.-.f.A. NBVS-FREE PRf '^■- 



-.H4TTANCX3G* TN 



Chattanooga Xews-t-ree Pres; 
(Chattanooga, TN'l 



February 



199; 



B^^^^^ 



Sunday, February 7, 1993 



I'm From The IRS And . 



How'd you like to have a friendly 
agent from the Internal Revenue Ser- 
vice approach you with a smile, say- 
ing: "I'm from the IRS — and I won- 
der if you'd like to make a contribu- 
tion to the candidate I'm supporting 
Tor the Senate or the House of Repre- 
sentatives or president?" 

Would you timidly reach for your 
pocketbook — or run? 

It is intimidating enough to get a 
notice from the IRS saying your tax 
form has some question about it 

It's unlikely you will encounter a 
scenario anything like that above. But 
consider this: What if you worked for 
the IRS or the Postal Service or the 
National Guard or any other federal 
ofTice — and your supervisor, the one 
who fills out your performance evalua- 
tion — came by with a smile and a re- 
quest for a political contribution? 
How would you feel? 

Political shakedowns are nothing 
nev.'. Nor is forced political activity. 
Nor IS the use of governmental em- 
ployees as "muscle" and "legs " in po- 
litical campaigns. But m the federal 
government, the Hatch Act has worked 
to keep government employees from 
becoming an oppressive political ma- 
chine directed by those who are in po- 
sitions of authority. 

The trouble is that there are now 
efforts to repeal (or amend) the Hatch 
Act in ways that could unleash thou- 
sands of federal employees in new 
and extensive political action. 

That could mean tax-paid govern- 
ment employees might be working 
against the political preferences of at 
least a portion of the citizens who pay 
their salaries and whom they are sup- 
posed to serve impartially. 

The_iIatclL.AcL_was adopted in 
1939. It protects the civil service and 
our ci tizens by assu n^ig federal em- 



ployees are not hired or promoted be- 
cause of politics instead of qualifica- 
tions, and seeks to assure government- 
al programs are not administered in a 
partisan manner. It seeks to avoid po- 
litical coercion. Some politicians and 
particularly the bosses of the big and 
powerful public-employee unions m 
federal government don t like that. 
They want to gain more muscle bv 
killing the Hatch Act 

But you don't hear any grassroots 
clamor from ordinary citizens for 
repeal of the Hatch Act 

The Hatch Act still leaves federal 
employees free to vote, contribute per- 
sonally to candidates and volunteer as 
campaign workers in non-work hours. 

Twice during the Bush administra- 
tion. Congress voted to take away the 
Hatch Act protections. Twice. Presi- 
dent George Bush vetoed the bills and 
twice Congress was unable to override 
his veto. But now with President Bill 
Clinton and Democratic Senate ana 
House majorities in cahoots, the at- 
tack on the Hatch Act has been re- 
newed. 

The Senate Governmental Affairs 
Committee is scheduled to begin hear- 
ings on anti-Hatch Act legislation Feb. 
17, with further action coming soon af- 
ter. (Sen. Jim Sasser. D-Tenn.. is a 
member of that committee.) 

The powers of the federal govern- 
ment federal employees, the federal 
purse and all of the federal bureauc- 
racy already are great. There is no 
need to weaken the Hatch Act's pro- 
tections. 

Watch out! There's danger that 
much of the federal government may 
be turned into a potentially oppressive 
political machine if the Hatch Act is 
killed or weakened. 

Tell your senators and representa- 
tive what you think about that 



173 



TfiNOOuM «; 



:HATTANOO.j-, 



lONP-l 

riftf: 22 1993 



Why We Should Keep Hatch Act 



While the liberal Democratic ma- 
jority in Coneress is moving with Pres- 
ident Bill Clinton s approval to kill the 
Hatch Act. testimony in a trial jn 
Nashville emphasizes why they are 
wrong. 

The Hatch Act is federal law de- 
signed to minimize the use of federal- 
ly financed government employees for 
partisan political purposes. Its repeal 
IS being sought because liberal Demo- 
crats and the bosses of the political la- 
bor unions that dominate much of fed- 
eral government want to be able to 
snake down government employees for 
campaign money and to mobilize a 3- 
million-person army of political work- 
ers in their favor. 

Tennessee's Public Service Com- 
mission, headed by three elected ofTi- 
cials. regulates trucking and other 
transportation, among otiier things. It 
gels ledcral money. maKing it subject 



to the Hatch Act But at trial of a law- 
suit brought by independent trucken 
in federal court in Nashville, thert 
have been disquieting claims of the 
use of public employees to raise polit 
ical campaign money fVom those beim 
regulated, with the threat of tough en 
forcement of rules against non-contnh 
mors and "favors" for regulation-vio- 
lating contributors. 

We need to keep the Hatch Act u 
safeguard public employees fron 
being shaken down by political bosses 
to keep them from using taxpayers 
money and to prevent the people', 
government power from being usee 
against them. 

But what is being complained o 
in Tennessee will surely become morr 
widespread if the Democratic coneres 
sional raajonty and Mr. Clinton kil 
tne Hatch Act and mobilize a captivi 
army of government employees. 



Leave 'Hatch' alone 



Q The law protects federal 
\Aforkers. 

We're are concerned ihai 
Congress is considering 
r_e_visions in. the ledern: 
Hatch .Act. a 1034 lau 
that bars federal workers 
iTom panisan political activities. 

Both Presidents Reagan and Bush De- 
posed any tmkenng with the Hatch Act. 
wnich has kept protected federal worKer^ 
from political coercion trom their superi- 
ors and everyone else from being Harassed 
by federal bureaucrats for panisan politi- 
cal gain. 

In this latest assault on the law. restric- 
tions on federal employees' political par- 
ticipation would be eased. Under the 
House-oassed measure - which the eniirj 
Tennessee delegation (except lor an ab- 
sent Harold Ford) voted for - federal 
workers could panicipate in political ac- 
trviry during non-work hours. 

As Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.) pointed out. 
however, the bill still could lead to poten- 



tial conllicts of interest among federal 
u orKers, .An Internal Revenue Sep.-ice au- 
aitor. for instance, could chair a counr>' 
Democratic or Republican comminee on 
his own time, or a U.S. anomey preparing 
a case against a politician could work for 
the politician's opponent at night, Mr. 
Wolf said. 

It also contains the troubling provision 
:hai would permit employees to solicit po- 
l;!ical contributions from fellow workers 

The U.S. Supreme Court has twice up- 
held the constinjtionaliry of the Hatch Act. 
Surveys have found no overwhelming de- 
sire among federal workers to get rid of the 
l.Tw ( indeed, many federal workers use the 
Hatch Act as a shield against subtle pres- 
sures to contnbuie money and time to par- 
tisan causesi. 

If It isn't broken, don't fix it. The Sen- 
ate should vote down the House's erforts 
to weaken a law that has served the nation 
well for more than half a century. 



LEAF-CHRONICLE 

CLARKSVILLr , TN 
DAILY 1B,67C 

THURGDAV 

HAR 11 1993 



174 



' Houston '^ost 

^00^7^:1 TEXA J 
i;.J2b.(i/1 



^^a22 1993 



Hatch in Jeopardy 

Law keeps politicaLpressure off federal employees 

lEDlTORIACl 
fT^HE HATCH A GT. owe o f 



HE HATCH A GT . owe o j the 
I best pieces oi government re- 

JL form legislation ever passed 
by Congress, has finally been delivered 
into the hands of its enemies. The only 
way it is likely to survive is through 
your demands that it not be gutted. 

For more than half a century, the 
Hatch Act has protected the public 
from a politicized federal work force 
and shielded government workers 
from political coercion by their bosses 
and others. 

It is once og9in ur.d?r attack, howev- 
er, by the powerful public employee 
unions and their friends. On Tuesday, 
the House may vote on a bill its back- 
ers say will "revise" the Hatch Act to 
permit federal employees to engage in 
political activities from which they 
are now barred by the Depression-era 
law. The bill would, in fact, kill Hatch. 

The last assault on the act was in 
1990 when the Democratic-controlled 
Congress overwhelmingly passed a 
similar "revision" bill. President Bush 
vetoed it and the Senate failed to over- 



ride the veto by only two votes. 

The Hatch Act was passed in 1939 
after revelations that employees of the 
Works Progress Administration, a 
New Deal agency, were being pres- 
sured to make political contributions. 

Today's Hatch Act revisionists argue 
that the 3 million federal employees 
should have more freedom to engage 
in political activities, such as organiz- 
ing political meetings and fund-raising 
events, endorsing candidates and hold- 
ing office in political groups. But some 
federal employee union leaders appar- 
ently have their own agenda which in- 
cludes, among other things, winning 
the right to strike. 

The Hatch Act may be unnecessarily 
complicated and restrictive, but that 
surely can be remedied without paving 
the way for those powerful unions to 
become partisan political machines. 

Such organizations could make it 
difficult, if not impossible, to ever re- 
duce the size and cost of government. 
And it would destroy the public's confi- 
dence in its federal civil service. 



175 



TYLER HORNING TFLEGRAPM 

fYLER. Tt 



ML^ettiurim 



OAILY 



3;..i56 



TUESDAY 



5S5 



HAR 2 1993 



llatcli x4ct Revision 
Threat To Protections 



,-l|T/>,,,,^j 



.u IS tit'Uing new attention in Wasliington is a move- 
'.' haicii Act and its protections against a poiiticued 



k^. old subject 
ment to aestioy 
bureaucracv 

Legislation. H H : ) bv i?ep. Bill Clay oi'Missoun. was iiuioauceaon tne 
first day of the new session and was approved by tne Post Olfice ana Civil 
Service Committee, wnicn Clay chairs, without a nearing. 

The Hattn Act. enacted in 1939, protects federal workers from poiiticai 
coercion, and iT protects the public from a politicized bureaucracy Dy 
prohibiting federal and postal workers from participatin in certain parti- 
san political activities. 

Federal and postal unions have challenged the Hatch Act tnree separate 
times in the U S S'.:prr::'.e Court, but the constitutionality of the Act was 
upheld eacn time- 
In writing for tne majority in one of those decisions. Justice Byron 
White said. "Our judgment is that neither the First .Amenament r.or anv 
kind of provision of the Constitution invalidates a law earring tnis kina of 
pai'tisan political conduct by federal employees. 

"Such decisions on our part would do no more than confirm tne judg- 
ment of histoiT, a juagment made by this countiy over tne last century 
that it is m the oest interest of the counti7, indeed essential, that federal 
service should depena upon meritorious performance ratner tnan political 
service, and that the poiiticai influence of federal employees on others and 
on the electoral process should be limited." 

Congress approved legislation to lift the restrictions on oolitics in the 
federal service m 1976 and again in 1990, but both times tne legislation 
was vetoed and the vetoes upheld. 

In 1976, then President Gerald Ford said; "The public expects the 
government service will be provided in a neutral, nonpartisan fashion. 
This bill would produce the opposite result ... If this bill were to become 
law, I believe pressure would be brought to bear on federal employees in 
extremely subtle ways beyond the reach of any anti-coercion statute so 
that they would inevitably feel compelled to engage in partisan activity ' 

In 1990. Pieisdeiu Bush s veto of a similar bill was overridden in tiie 
House and iiairowi\ i'j:,tained in the Senate. He said: "The Hatch .Act r.as 
successfuU;- msuiateu the Federal Service from the undue political inilu- 
ence that would de?'.c;y r.^ essential political neutrality ' 

In the Senate, '.he ntw Texas member, Robert Ki'ueger, could be a Key 
vote on the bill '.his year. 

In an editorial Feb, 19, the ll^a/ySfreetJounishioted that President Bill 
Clinton is not likely to be able to accomplish his pledge to reduce tne 
federal work force tiirough attrition by 100,000 over four years if he goes 
along with the effort in Congress to destroy the Hatch Act. 

Destroying the Act would boost the power of public employee unions. 
making it less likely that Congress would ever vote to streamline ur 
reform the bureauciaty, the editorial said. 

Federal workers themselves have never overwhelmingly been m favor 
of changing the Hatch Act. A survey in 1989 by the Merit Systems Protec- 
tion Board found that only 32 percent of federal employees wanted the act 
weakened. 

Common Cause .ind other groups of that type oppose weakening the 
Hatch Act. It is seen as the only way to keep federal unions from emerging 
as strictly partisan i.olitical machines. 

Concerned citizen; would do well to let their legislators know that they 
don't want the Hatch Act weakened. Its provisions are widely seen as one 
of the nation's oldest ana best "good government" laws, and should be kept 
strong.. 



176 



LUBBOCK AUALANCHE-30URNAL 

LUBBOCK. TX 
DAILY 67,15:3 

SATURDAY 

FEB 27 1993 

363 ^— GS 

^ . zmttm . y 

RETAJy THE HATCH ACT 



Curb Bureaucrats' Politics 



PRESIDENT CLINTON must re- 
think ios pledge to support changing - 
gutting might be the more appropriate 
word - the federal law that bars parti- 
san poljucai conduct by employees oi 
the federal government. 

If that prohibition goes down, the po- 
• tential for a politicized federal work 
, force will go up - and out the window 
: may go any real hope of cutting bacjc 
on the number of people v.-ho draw tax- 
paid salaries from Washington. 

Don't we have Mr. Clinton's promise 
that he will reduce the federal work 
' force^ by lOO.OOg^ over four years? 
Scrapping the Hatch Ac t would enable 
federal employees to become a power- 
ful lobbjr against such a cutback. 

Neverttaeiess. House Democratic 
leaders last week tned to rush through 
a bill easiEg the ban. just failing to 
muster a needed two-thirds majority 

THE AP SAID the measure still i5 
likely to become law. awaiting only 
routine legislative processes that 
House leaders mistakenly thought thev 
could b>pass. 

When George Bush was in the While 
House the bill easily passed Congress 
only to craw his veto. Mr Bush argued 
for prese.-\ation of the Hatch Act. say- 
ing It .-3C successfully insulated the 
Federa. S^.-vice from the undue politi- 
cal ir.:'._-r-:r mat would desirnv its es- 



sential political neutrality." 

' ' President Clinton, however, has 

pledged to sign the new legislation 

Supporters of the measure sav it 
merely would let federal worKers run 
for office, manage campaigns ana col- 
lect political donations - as long as 
they would not try to intimidate co- 
workers into joining the cause. 

TAKEN AT face value, that sounds 
well and good. But the potential is 
there for abuse, as recognized by a Su- 
preme Court decision in 1973. 

Justice Byron White, writing for the 
< court majority at that time, said the 
judgment of the nation over the past 
century was "that it is in the best inter- 
est of the country, indeed essential. 
that ... the pclitical influence of federal 
employees on others and on the elector- 
al process should be limited." 

The Hatch Act was oneinally passed 
in 1939 amid the growth of New Deal 
bureaucracy and revelations of politi- 
cal coercion m the WPA jobs program 

.At the time, lawmakers worried that 
President Franklin D. Roosevelt would 
turn federal relief workers into a 'par- 
tisan armv" to helo him get re-elected. 

We cannot risk the formation of a 
■pamsan army" of federal employees 
at the very time the nation needs to 
trim the federal work force. The two 
concert? run at cross ourooses 



Bl/f<^i 



■LL£S 



sv 



177 



RICHMOND TIHES-DI5PATCH 

'ICHMOND. VA 



FEB 28 1993 

0un/ ^ £iL£-s 

17: SY 



Down the Hatch? 



In 1939 Congress passed the Hatch Act, wh ich prohibits iederal empiovet 
from engaging in partisan politics. The Act proteas il) the Civil Semce tro- 
coercion i"if you want your job. campaign for me") and (2) the citizenrv irom 
pohucizea government workiorce tnat could use its immense resources on oenaii 
partisan causes. The Hatch Act has served the naaon well. 

And Congress wants to change it. 

Last week the House leadership almost rammed through a bill that wou, 
essentially repeal the Hatch Act. The anempt tailed to gain the rwo-inirc 
necessary to pass a bill under a so-called "special order." Sooner ratner tfjin late 
the House is exneaed to vote for repeal on a simply maiontv vote. Presiae: 
Clinton savs ne would sign repeal legisiauon. Thus tne Senate hkeiy will form l' 
last line or defense. 

Should Hatcn be repealed.' Clinton suppons scnct ethics regulauons: : 

wants his aiaes to avoid conflicts of mterests. There is no greater comiict 

interests than that of the bureaucracy lobbying and campaigning for. . . .-noi 

bureaucracy. The President also has called for patnouc sacnrice. for puttmg ti 

nation s economic needs firsL If empowered to engage m partisan politics wou 

DAILY PRESS federal bureaucrats work for more spendmg — or less? The naive need not ventu; 

. an answer — not even a guess. 

'■UNOAv i:r 705 Covemmeni service IS a privilege. It is not 3 nghL When an mdividual takes 

Civil-Service job. he voluntarily rehnquishes his nght to run for office, to parucipai 
m partisan activity, to campaign openly on others' behalf. 
FES 28 1993 ^* C'^'' Semce replaced the spoils system; the Hatch Act keeps parusa 

politics out of Civil Service. The system works. There is no need to change it. 



The Hatch Act 

Easing political limits on federal workers a mistake 

People can choose whether to be fed- Amencans are fed up with the federal 

eral employees. And if they decide to bureaucracy. They want to see it trmimed 

accept such employment, they should be and made more efficient and responsive, 

willing to accept the limitations imposed That won't be accomplished by giving 

by the Hatch Act. federal employees more power, but more 

The {^tch Act. passed in 1 939, pre- power they will get if restncoons on polit- 
vents the federal work force from becom- leal activities are lifted, 
ing politicized. It Umits the political influ- 
ence of federal employees. Amenca's dvil service system isn't per- 

That is as It should be. and efforts now fea, and there is some degree of unfair- 

under way in Congress to weaken the ness in the Hatch Act. Most federal 

Hatch Act are misguided. The measure employees would not abuse their posi- 

being considered would permit federal rtons if they became involved in politics, 

workers to partiapate m politics as long StilL the door to such involvement should 

as they did so on their own time and did remam closed. Despite its flaws, the sys- 

not try to mtimidate co-workers. That's tem works, and easmg Hatch Ax::t restnc- 

like telling the cat he am play with the tions would not be in the best mterests 

canary if he promises not to eat it. of the nanon. 



178 



OflfWILLE REGISTER t BEE 

OANVILL£, VA 
DAILY 23,370 

FRIPAY 

MAR 5 1993 



*8 ^ 

. ctd. 



3uf^i 



■lies 



RM 



Gridlock reconsidered 



Congrpas is poised for an overhaul of 
the H /t^hA ct, a 1939 law designed to 
keep political patronage from tainting 
the federal work force. 

The House passed a measure 
Wednesday that merely tinkers wjth the 
Hatch Act, but diluting the ban on 
political activities for federal employees 
may be a prelude to its eventual demise. 

If the Senate concurs with the House, 
federal employees will still be barred 
&X)m running for elective office on the 
national or state level. They will, 
however, be permitted to run in local 
elections and to endorse and raise 
money for candidates on their own time. 

The margin of the House vote — 333- 
86 — testifies to the Hatch Act's shaky 
standing in Washington. All but two 
Democrats voted for the changes, and 
the measure also attracted 85 
Republicans. 

Congress has been itching to alter the 
Hatch Act; only two vetoes by President 
Bush has kept it at bay this long. 

Tho bipartisan appeal of the Hatch 
Act should como as no surprise. The end 
of the Hatch Act means the beginning of 
an enormous power surge at both ends of 



Pennsylvania Avenue. 

Although the Hatch Act was a 
response to Franklin Roosevelt's 
political bullying to shore up his New 
Deal agenda, the appointment power of 
Congress is now more intimidating than 
that of the executive branch. Unless 
tenn limits become the law of the land, 
Congress is a far more durable 
institution. 

But the misuse of presidential power 
remains a legitimate fear. If a president 
decided on wholesale repayment of his 
political debts, the civil service system 
could be gutted. 

The federal work force represents 
another pitfall if the Hatch Act is 
screipped. Would Joe Democrat 
enthusiastically carry cut tho policies of 
a R/'ipublican president? Could Jtine 
Republican be trusted with the agenda 
of a Democratic Congress? Would 
bureaucrats of any stripe deal in good 
faith with citizens who hold different 
political views? 

The nightmarish vision of Washington 
as the world's capital of political 
patronage makes one long for the good 
old days of gridlock. 



179 



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180 



UISCONSIN STATE JOURNAL 

HAOISOM. UI 
DAILY 84,376 

HONDAV 

HAR 6 1993 

Bufv yties 

132^^ ^ TL 



OUR OPINION 



Protect Hatch Act 



From the "Just what the nation needs — 
NOT!" file: Congressional efforts to ruin 
the Hatch_Act_are moving right along, 
despite a lack of evidence that the 54-year- 
old law needs any tinkering at all. The 
potential consequences are dire: So-called 
"Big Labor" would gain a stranglehold over 
the federal government, with the potential 
to choke off efforts to cut the federal 
payroll even as the federal budget deficit 
rockets past the $330 billion mark. 

Since 1939. the Hatch Act has barred 
most federal employees and U.S. Postal 
Service workers from soliciting campaign 
funds from fellow workers, using their 
office for partisan political activity, taking 
an active role in partisan campaigns and 
running for partisan office. The "Hatched" 
workers are still allowed to vote, express 
political opinions, make contributions and 
engage in non-partisan activities, including 
running for non-partisan office. 

The act was inspired by newspaper 
reports during, the 1930s that federal 
employees — many of them victims of the 
Depression who were managing to eke out 
a living on WPA jobs — were being coerced 
into contributing to political campaigns. Its 
roots are in the civil service system, which 
protects federal employees from the threat 
of losing their jobs with every new 
administration. 

And the vast majority of the nation's 3.2 
million federal employees think that's a 
fair trade. In a 1989 survey, 62 percent 
opposed weakening the Hatch Act. A 
whopping 89 percent of members in the 
National Federation of Federal Employees 
voted against changing the act. 

So whence comes the momentum from 
change if not from the rank-and-file? From 
the union leaders, who see the Hatch Act as 
a major roadblock in their path to power. 
Weakening the Hatch Act would give them 
access to an enormous army of potential 
campaign workers, enabling them to help 
elect representatives and senators who are 
STmpathetic to union causes. 

These union leaders talk about how 
f^eral workers are being denied their 
rights, but their true aims have less to do 
with the Constitution than with the next 



contract dispute. The president of the 
.\atibnal Association of Letter Carriers, for 
example, has declared that until the Hatch 
Act is weakened, his members will never 
get the right to strike. And it strains 
credulity to imagine federal union leaders 
1 40 percent of the federal workforce is 
umonized, compared to 16 percent in the 
private-sector) supporting President 
Clinton s plan to cut 100.000 federal jobs. 

Just how powerful these union bosses 
already are is evidenced by the fact that 
three good Wisconsin Republicans, U.S. 
Reps. Scott Klug, Steve Gunderson and 
Thomas Petri — all of whom ought to know 
better — have already signed on to 
weakening the Hatch Act. Just who do they 
think they're representing? Not federal 
employees, who like the act just the way it 
is. Not taxpayers, who would probably find 
It disconcerting (to say the least) to have 
their local Internal Revenue Service agent, 
or FBI man, or federal game warden 
knocking on their door looking for 
campaign contributions. 

Three times, the federal and postal 
workers unions have challenged the Hatch 
Act in the federal court system on grounds 
It deprives their members of Constitutional 
rights. Three times, the U.S. Supreme Court 
has upheld the act. Twice, attempts to 
weaken the act have been passed by 
Congress but vetoed by Republican 
presidents: Gerald Ford in 1976, George 
Bush in 1990. Unfortunately, if this most 
recent attempt passes. President Clinton 
has promised to sign it. 

"The American people should know this 
is a disgrace," says U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf, a 
Republican whose Virginia district includes 
thousands of federal workers who want the 
Hatch Act unchanged. He's right. And the 
American people need to speak up now and 
tell Congress to leave the Hatch Act alone. 



181 



30URNAL TIMES 



RACINE, 
SUNOAV 



WI 
■38,015 



MAR 7 1993 



2070 
. . .ect 



TM 



NO GREAT FAVOR 



Repeal of Hatch Act 
would be a mistake 



Wisconsin's members of the 
House of Representatives did 
their state and nation no great 
favor last week when they voted 
to repeal the 54-year-old Hatch 
Act. ^ 

Th ff Hatrh Art bars federal 
workers from running for political 
office and participatmg in 
partisan political activities. Those 
in favor of repeal, constituting a 
hefty 333-86 House majority, 
argue that the law deprives 
federal workers of their 
constitutional rights. 

What the Hatch Act actually 
does is insulate federal employees 
from the pressures of the 
politicians responsible for their 
jobs and paychecks. Its repeal 
will give elected officials and 
partisan political appointees 
enormous leverage over federal 
employees and their political 
activities. 

It is no acccident that the Hatch 
Act is on the books. It was passed 
originally to free the bureaucracy 
of political hacks and insulate 
federal workers from the 
politicians' understandable drive 
to get re-elected. 



At last report, most federal 
employee groups opposed repeal 
of the Hatch Act. That Congress 
might go ahead with repeal 
anyway illustrates the hollowness 
of the legislators' claim that they 
are protecting the interests and 
rights of federal workers. 

It's no mystery why Congress is 
doing this. Members envision a 
federal bureaucracy that will be 
made beholden to them and 
vulnerable to demands that 
federal workers help further 
incumbents' political ambitions. 
When a person controls the money 
and authorization for your job, 
you're not likely refuse an 
invitation to join his re-election 
team. 

The desire to be re-elected is, of 
course, a bipartisan concern of 
incumbents. As a result, the fact 
that Wisconsin's entire 
congressional delegation — 
Democrats and Republicans alike 
— voted for repeal comes as no 
real surprise. 

It is, however, a 
disappointment. 



182 



OSHKOSH NORTHUEb'TERN 

OSHKOSH, UI 
DAILY 28,000 

MONDAY 

HAR 6 1993 



190 



BOF^ILB'S 



TM 



ec« 



Hatch Act again comes 
under attack in Congress 



The Hatch Act has been the 
bulwark protecting federal 
workers from the pressures of 
their bosses to get politically 
involved. 

The Hatch Act is being 
pecked away now, and it is a 
serious matter. 

Even Republicans, such as 
Tom Petri, Steven Gunderson 
and Scott Klug, ail of Wiscon- 
sin, have taken a turn with the 
hammer and chisel. 

It is not being repealed, but 
it is being changed in such a 
way that the protection it 
gives federal workers — and 
the protection it gives the 
public against political in- 
volvement of its public ser- 
vants — is being diminished. 

Federal workers contend 
they are entitled to enjoy the 
same rights to political in- 
volvement that non-federal 
employees enjoy. 



To this, the answer is that 
they enjoy job security and 
e.xtraordmary pay levels as 
compensation for giving up 
the right to be in politics. But 
they don't seem willing to give 
up their extraordinary privi- 
leges, and extra pay to justify 
their entering into politick- 
ing. 

The Hatch Act was enacted 
in 1939 because of the abuses 
that occurred in federal em- 
ployment because political 
coercion was so rampant. 

No one has been harmed by 
having the Hatch Act protec- 
tions in place. But the yearn- 
ing for political power over 
federal employees did not en- 
tirely subside. The Hatch Act 
has never been secure from 
attack from those wanting 
that added power. But this 
term of Congress it has be- 
come very insecure.. 



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